Twitter is used for a host of things, but one of the growing trends is using the social networking and micro-blogging service as a means to promote political candidates and messages. Many people credit President Obama's election victory to his use of Twitter, Facebook and other Web 2.0 tools, though the president has since abandoned his use of Twitter.
American Majority, a political training institute, has released a Twitter tutorial, or Twittivism Guide, and uploaded it to the Knowledge Network. Politics aside, this guide gives readers a glossary of Twitter vocabulary and a step-by-step tutorial of creating an account and beginning to "tweet." This guide also gives tips on becoming a power Twitter user and using Twitter as a means to have your political voice heard.
Perhaps one of the most helpful uses of the guide is its instruction on using Twitter to contact your U.S. Congressional representatives. One of the helpful Web sites mentioned is Tweet Congress which, among other things, provides a stream of all or most of the Congressional Twitter feeds. One of the other main goals of this site is to get those U.S. senators and representives who are not using Twitter to create an account.
Though "Twittivism" can be a powerful tool for getting your message across, all Internet users should be aware of something security company MX Logic calls "political hacktivism." In its September Threat Forecast, MX Logic suggested that as the debate about U.S. health care reform continues to heat up, there's a strong chance that forms of political "hacktivism" will affect the performance and availability of popular social networking sites, including Twitter. These highly concentrated attacks are becoming more common, and typically center on controversial or political issues, hence their name.