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The Real Net Effect: Andy Carvin & the Power of Twitter

Many readers who follow EAWorldview (@EANewsFeed) on Twitter are likely to know the name Andy Carvin (@acarvin). Carvin, the senior social media strategist at NPR and an established foreign policy journalist, has spent the last year Tweeting the revolutions and uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa.

And few would dispute Andy's prowess on the social media platform. In 2011, The Daily Dot said that no one had done more to transform Twitter than Carvin and the hacking group Anonymous. The Columbia Journalism Review even asked, "Is This the World’s Best Twitter Account?" Carvin has been called a "living, breathing real-time verification system," and has often spoke about the power, and sometimes the pitfalls, of using social media to spread the news.

Here at EA, we think of Andy Carvin as a friend and a colleague who is always willing to engage, discuss, debate, and debunk the news that rolls across his Twitter timeline.

On Tuesday, NPR's On Point Radio's Tom Ashbrook hosted a discussion about Twitter, where it is going and where it has been, and Andy Carvin was a member of the panel. The discussion is not, specifically, about the work of Andy, nor is it specifically about the Arab Spring uprisings, however, it is a fascinating insight into a technological and sociological artifact that has already sent shockwaves through history, and will likely continue to do so.

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