Blog // Connect South Carolina

Letting Citizens Have Their Say

By Wil Payton

Taking turns on a state run Twitter account

Vermont has taken a page out of Sweden’s social media playbook by turning over the state’s Twitter account to private citizens to tweet about their daily lives for a week.

This is a pretty progressive move for a state with an older demographic (second-oldest median age nationally according to the 2010 census). State policymakers believe this is a chance to cultivate a more contemporary image to attract more tourist and younger residents.

In The New York Times article Jen Butson, director of communications for the state’s Department of Tourism provided the following insight:

“It’s neat that we can introduce a Vermont that is Web and tech-savvy to people who wouldn’t assume that’s part of what Vermont is,” Ms. Butson said. “We’re kind of hip. We like to have a good time, we like to share our stories.”

Within four days, the feed had over 560 followers, according to a metric provided to Ms. Butson by, and messages from the feed have showed up on people’s Twitter feeds more than 430,000 times.

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