Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Allen & Co. is all a-Twitter

Express Staff Writer

Last year, Facebook was all the buzz. This year, media moguls gathered at the annual Allen & Co. conference in Sun Valley are excited about the online messaging service, not least because CEO and founder Evan Williams is attending—according to the chatter on Twitter.

"Ev is going to be the belle of the ball," predicted Silicon Valley entrepreneur Mark Pincus, CEO of Zynga Inc.

Williams' creation was already causing waves at the conference Tuesday, and not just because of speculation he may be looking for a buyer for the as yet unprofitable Web site. Numerous "tweets" have started surfacing from the traditionally silent media conference.

As of Tuesday morning, Williams' own Twitter page remained silent.

But the media are already gearing up for the traditional tussle for tidbits. Reuters reporter Robert MacMillan tweeted Tuesday, "At #sunvalley lodge. Just got menaced by swan at duck pond. He must work for Allen & Co."

Twitter users are poised to pounce on any secrets released.

"On the way to the airport; I may be on Twitter lockdown at the conference but if @ev [Evan Williams] can twitter so can I." tweeted Richard Rosenblatt, co-founder of Demand Media. The real buzz on Twitter, however, is whether the annual conference can help the mainstream media. A popular tweet Tuesday came from social media strategist Matt Singley: "Old men gather at Sun Valley summit to try to understand why nobody wants to read a newspaper."

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