Largely thanks to President Obama, politicians are turning on to the Web as a way to get their message across. They won’t be able to pay Twitter for political ads though. At least, not right now.
Twitter has shut the door on political advertisers who want to use its new promoted tweets and promoted trends systems. The first word of this came when Eric Frenchman, chief Net strategist at GOP consulting firm Connell Donatelli (a Republican consulting firm) was rebuffed in his attempt to use the system to promote his messages. A Twitter spokesperson told ClickZ:
This cycle is indeed closed to political advertisers … it’s a moot point because Twitter’s only just testing out the new ad vehicles, and has quite enough ad partners aboard already.
Biz Stone and Ev Williams, Twitter’s founders, seem to be fairly apolitical. Neither has lent his money or opinions to either of the sides in the U.S. political system. Stone may have been expressing a general mistrust in politics by founding a personally funded charity that will support a broad swath of needs from arts to health to education. We’re still waiting to hear from Twitter whether their stance on political ads will change as their ad systems get more clever at targeting the right people (which could reduce some of the nuisance factor that comes with campaign ads).
In the meantime, Twitter users already fed up with the noise of the midterms can rejoice. And the joy of Twitter’s architecture is that following anyone, even a President, is entirely optional.