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Why does Michelle Obama need two Twitter accounts? (+video)

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The first lady’s Pinterest site is run the same way. Most of those photos of her and her family, and favorite recipes (grilled peaches with yogurt and pistachios?), and exhortations about “why we vote” were put up by campaign staff.

Mrs. Obama’s new @FLOTUS handle reflects her official White House duties, however. It’s run by people from her office who are executive branch (and hence official US government) employees.

Legally speaking, @FLOTUS tweets will have to be stuff that deals with her official duties and the nation as a whole, as opposed to President Obama’s political fortunes. Thus on Thursday she tweeted “Join me and Barack for #MLK Day of Service” after thanking everyone for sending birthday wishes.

Hmm. @FLOTUS has sent three tweets, and it’s got more than 78,000 followers. That’s a pretty good tweet-to-listener ratio.

Most of this social media stuff is done by staff, of course. The few that she sends herself are supposed to be signed “-mo.”

Is the White House actually good at social media? We think that question can be answered definitively only by someone more versed in the dark electronic arts than we are. But from our point of view, it's a pretty shrewd operator. Take the White House petition site. You can put up a petition on anything, and if it reaches a certain signature level in a certain period of time, the White House will respond with its point of view.

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