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Big Bird, Binders and Bayonets

There were three presidential debates, and three instant memes. Would that have happened without Twitter? Doubtful. From a strategic standpoint, the success or failure of the candidates in the debates will be framed by whoever wins the election. But from a media standpoint, this will be seen that social media offered up an instant, real-time analysis where a consensus was reached on standout moments and vivid statements even before the candidates had wrapped up. What is also clear is that the traditional punditry is following what is going on in social media and referencing it in their analysis. Tonight, for instance, minutes after the debate Tom Brokaw made reference to Obama’s “horses and bayonets” reference as a trending topic, just as he as had Romney’s “binders” comment last week.

Here’s Twitter’s stats:

  • 105,767
    TPM – 9:45pm EDT – Obama: “We also have fewer horses and
    bayonets”
  • 102,339
    TPM – 10:31pm EDT – Schieffer: “I think we all love teachers”
  • 87,040
    TPM – 9:58pm EDT – Romney on Obama’s “apology tour”
  • 85,152
    TPM – 9:40pm EDT – Bob Schieffer steers conversation back to foreign
    policy
  • 78,069
    TPM – 10:29pm EDT – Romney on auto industry
  • 76,720
    TPM – 9:15pm EDT – Obama on Assad/Syria
  • 74,856
    TPM – 9:34pm EDT – Small business discussion
  • 70,639
    TPM – 9:12pm EDT – Obama: “You said Russia was #1 foreign threat to
    national security”

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