Twitter, Time team up for 'person of the year'

Time | Twitter

Seven years after bizarrely naming you its person of the year for your ability to, I dunno, tweet and stuff, Time wants you to help with its selection this year. And it has formally enlisted Twitter as your official means of weighing in:

The choice is made by TIME’s editors, but we’re always interested to hear who our readers think should bear the title. This year, using Poptip, TIME will include social media voting exclusively on Twitter. Users can vote by tweeting their choice with #TIMEPOY or on, where Poptip’s technology is recording, visualizing and analyzing results in real time. Poptip combines direct replies on Twitter, Tweets that include #TIMEPOY and Tweets that mention @TIME so that no matter where or how users cast their vote, their voices will be heard.

It's not the first time Time has solicited reader feedback, of course — it offered a people's choice poll last year, won by Kim Jong Un. The editors ultimately picked Barack Obama, who finished a distant 18th in the reader poll behind the likes of Stephen Colbert and Psy.

It seems unlikely readers were hurting for opportunities to opine on Time's person of the year before, and isn't the beauty of Twitter that you shouldn't need a partnership with Twitter to take advantage of everything Twitter has to offer? If you need promoted tweets to generate meaningful conversations and get readers excited about a hashtag, are you doing something wrong?

Still, Twitter's partnerships with news organizations is something to keep an eye on in light of Vivian Schiller's hire as head of news in October. Twitter's TV moves have focused on providing complementary experiences that go beyond promoted tweets, so we'll see if other legacy news companies follow suit.

Here's to more innovative Twitter partnerships than promoted hashtags in 2014.

  • Sam Kirkland

    Sam Kirkland is Poynter's digital media fellow, focusing on mobile and social media trends. Previously, he worked at the Chicago Sun-Times as a digital editor, where he helped launch digital magazines and ebooks in addition to other web duties.


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