The Veteran Twitter Warriors of the Conservative Movement

More

Twitter user @PatriotUSA76 obsessively monitored every tweet that Anthony Weiner sent out, eventually alerting Andrew Breitbart, who made Weiner the focus of his conservative attacks over the past week, to the message that eventually exposed the scandal. The New York Times has a glimpse into the small group of Twitter users "who warned young women about ... Weiner."

Organizing around a Twitter hashtag is nothing new, though, as the Atlantic Wire's Adam Clark Estes points out. He goes on to explain how hashtag-based organizing has been used by conservatives in the past, especially during the early days of the Tea Party movement.

In the days following the last presidential election, a small group of conservatives turned to Twitter in retaliation to Obama's championing of Facebook. After all, the Obama campaign hired Chris Hughes, one of Facebook's founders, to run their social media strategy, and the approach seems to have worked quite well. (Fast Company put Hughes in March 2009 on their cover and called him "The Kid Who Got Obama Elected.") Twitter, however, still had a relatively small user base at that time and according to conservative grassroots organizer and author Michael Leahy, "It seemed like a fertile opportunity."

Leahy took action in November 2008 and never expected his initiative to become so popular so quickly. "I didn't know if there were any conservatives on Twitter," Leahy told The Atlantic Wire. "So I started a list and I called it Top Conservatives on Twitter. Very quickly, I discovered that a lot conservatives were on twitter and were very competitive."

Read the full story at The Atlantic Wire.

Jump to comments
Presented by

The Atlantic Wire is your authoritative guide to the news and ideas that matter most right now.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Technology

Just In