We're not sure how many of our readers have their own Twitter accounts, but we recommend to those who do (and those who are considering getting one) to make sure that you join over 2000 other followers and subscribe to @CityCaucus on Twitter. Loved by social media junkies, and disparaged by critics of these sometimes invasive tools, Twitter is creeping into more mainstream use. For us, it's now an invaluable tool, and here's why.
Political junkies that we are, many interesting items cross our desk each day that we cannot take time to blog about. What we do instead is send them off to our Twitter followers.
For example, we've been watching the very interesting mayoral battles taking place lately in Toronto, Winnipeg and Edmonton among other places. Rob Ford has been the subject of literally dozens of our tweets, if only because he's such an outrageous political figure from the standpoint of the media (but not voters, as Ford is poised to win).
There has also been a bizarre scandal involving a US blogger and the Edmonton mayor's race. Stories like these keep popping up and we try to pass them on to Twitter. We also "bookmark" several stories per day that we think will interest our readers using "Delicious". Those links are also automatically shared to our Twitter and Facebook pages. For those who live on Facebook, you can see all of our posts and bookmarks, as well as share or comment on them. Join the over 1300 Facebook users who like CityCaucus.com.
We also sometimes feature breaking news on Twitter first, which is why you might want to subscribe to our tweets using your cell phone. Just click the tiny cell phone icon next to the Follow button and Twitter will text them to your phone as we post them.
If you are a Twitter or Facebook user, note that we have buttons at the top of each post that allows you to share them with your network. Click the Tweet button and you'll be able to send out a link to our post. You can also click "Like" to recommend the story to your Facebook friends. The Facebook "Share" link is now placed at the bottom of our posts, and you can use that if you want to share and add a comment.
One final note, and it's about the background image that you see at our Twitter.com/CityCaucus home page. It comes from a post we did waaay back in January 2009.
Only seven weeks old then we were getting used to new visitors arriving at our site every day. Then for some unknown reason, according to our web stats we began getting regular traffic from Vietnam. As a result we did this post, saying that we were stepping up an international ad campaign spend including renting a billboard in Ho Chi Minh City.
The guy who rented it to us, a US ex-pat named Darrell said of the billboard itself, "You can see that sumbitch from anywhere in town!"
Then wouldn't you know it, the traffic from Vietnam dried up almost immediately. They must have been shy or something. We get lots of international traffic here at CityCaucus.com, but that was among the strangest.
- post by Mike