The Twittersphere thinks Poynter's Jeff Sonderman's solution to the Associated Press's new, stricter social media guidelines is a joke. Earlier this week, the AP told its journalists it couldn't share personal opinions or retweet opinions even if they put a "RT does not equal endorsement" disclaimer in their Twitter bios. Considering how much of twitter involves retweeting opinion based things, journalists thought the new guidelines made no sense. But Sonderman thought of a solution for the AP's journalists: The Neutral Tweet, NT. "Perhaps journalists could convey that sentiment by creating a 'neutral retweet' for the times when they want to repost something but don’t want people to read anything into their motives," he writes. The idea is winning few converts.
That's already what how retweet works. "Sorry but a RT is a NT," tweeted Reuters social media editor, Anthony De Rosa and NYU's Jay Rosen seconded that "I don't think NT is necessary, either." It's all the same thing, tweeting something that someone else tweeted, right?
This sounds like a joke. "Wait so 'NT' is a thing? It's not a parody? It seems like a parody," wondered Mother Jones's Nick Baumann. All the tweeting about it sure makes it sound like a parody.
This could get complicated. "Hey let's confuse Luddites even more by creating additional syntax for them to learn to get into Twitter!," tweeted De Rosa ...
This was more fun when it was a joke. ... leading to replies like the Center for Innovation's suggestion "JT: Retweet about how the news media is doomed - only of interest to other journalists #twalphabetforjournalists." Our own Richard Lawson totally misunderstood the meaning of RT, which led to Adam Clarke Estes's longing for an ST. Even Poynter's own managing editor Steve Myers has joined in on the fun. "Instead of an NT, what about +0." Wait, that may have been serious again.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.