February 10, 2009

Ahmadinejad interested in chatting with Obama

Per Al Jazeera, "President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said Tehran is ready for a change in its relationship with Washington, a day after US President Barack Obama pledged to rethink US-Iran ties." Ahmadinejad added he is willing to talk with the U.S. leader personally. Al Jazeera also posted a video report on the announcement.

The founder of @BreakingNewsOn had the first tweet about Ahmadinejad's statement, citing the AP.

@mpoppel (Netherlands): AP: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad says he welcomes talks with US based on mutual respect

Washington Post foreign correspondent @Thomas_Erdbrink commented from the capital.

@Thomas_Erdbrink (Tehran): "Death to America!", crowds chanted as Ahmadinejad said Iran was ready to talk to America. People, make up your minds!!!

Iranian twitterers responded to the tweet.

@mahdi (Tehran): @Thomas_Erdbrink There is no political analysis power among most Iranian ppl. They just follow wht they hear, watch & read on state media.

@keyvan (Tehran): @Thomas_Erdbrink You know, ordinary people say what media and/or governments enforce them to say. Isn't it the case in the US as well?

@Thomas_Erdbrink later wrote:

@Thomas_Erdbrink (Tehran): @mahdi On the other hand: many in the crowds said they favored (better) relations between Iran and the US.

Here's a sample of reaction from the United States:

@ltfreedude (San Francisco, Calif.): Iran's Ahmadinejad ready for talks, 'true changes' with U.S. who is he to say this?

@nlw (Evanston, Ill.): Interested in the news about Iran asking for meeting with Obama

@KevinMercuri (New York, N.Y.): Intriguing that Iranian President Ahmadinejad officially requests a meeting w/ President Obama just as he learns who the Next Israeli PM is

A man in Indonesia told the New York Times that he supported Ahmadinejad's efforts.

@izarbaik (Jakarta): @nytimes, I just give support to Mr. Ahmadinejad. I'm so proud with him.


Israel Election Day

Per CNN, Israelis are heading to the polls today, despite bad weather. The general election will see a new Prime Minister brought to office and potentially a new direction for Israeli politics.

The BBC website reports that turn out is up despite poor weather and voter apathy. The BBC also has an innovative feature tracking election comment from their own reporters as well blogs in the Israeli media. Their coverage is rounded out by this feature which solicits comments from Israeli voters about their election day experiences.

@JerusalemPost is tweeting election headlines. The website has full coverage & analysis of today's voting.

@musicpeace (Galilee, Israel) sitting with a kitty on my lap. Going to a meeting and then to vote. It's election day in Israel. I am voting GREEN.

@ezrabutler (Jerusalem) twitpic.om/1f4oo - just walked a half hour to do my civic duty

@PiTZiK (Tel Aviv, Israel) מימשתי את זכותי הדמוקרטית! (Served the democratic right)

@jaymrosen (Jerusalem) Pouring rain, gale winds, and Election Day. Couldn't have asked for more.

@handmadeisrael (Modi'in, Israel) has been to vote and has had a nice, work-free day with friends.

@RoyKlein (Israel) 34 political parties in Israel. Seems like a bit too much Democracy. #elections


Man shoots self after slow speed car chase

A driver of a Bentley led Los Angeles police in a more than three-hour car chase Monday night, shooting himself during a standoff after he pulled over.

The AP posted a short story on the wire, while live feeds captured the chase. The Los Angeles Times reported that the man was brought to a hospital and his condition is "grave." It later reported he had died.

Twitter-ers followed along, with 659 tweets using the hashtag #chase and 554 using #bentley by 1:30 a.m. PST Tuesday.

@maggietheresa: #chase... a high speech chase involving a Bentley though, nice to see the recession isn't hurting everyone.....

@dan_miller (Broken Arrow, Okla.): Man I should get some sleep but can't beat a low speed car #chase

@mightymendoza (Los Angeles): Top trending topic on Twitter currently? Yep. You guessed it. #chase

@thekiwanian (Tucson, Ariz.): I've never been so enthralled in a chase/standoff before, but... now what? #bentley

@longbaugh (Minneapolis, Minn.): Followed the live feeds of that LA car chase, and the subsequent ending. Interesting stuff. Wonder who it was, since it seems it wasn't DJK.

Some news outlets reported on how people were tweeting about the event.

@jonassink (Mount Hermon, Calif.): NICE! Twitter mentioned on KABC broadcast! Twitter reporting FTW! #chase

@jamieharrington (Lewisville, Texas): "He may be a person of significance, and apparently people are twittering about this as well" ABC 7 #bentley #chase

Rumors about Chris Brown and DJ Khaled being the driver of the car also dominated the conversation.

@admorales (New Jersey): Do you think this guy being chased by LAPD will ever find out that media thought he was Chris Brown or DJ Khaled? #chase #bentley

@josephrosario: DJ KHALED was NOT in the vehicle. According to @seamoss Khaled's in FL. Anonymous #bentley #chase driver is dead. Retweet please.

Chicago newspaper Redeye said this story was an example of how Twitter-ers contribute to journalism:

@redeyechicago (Chicago): At the end of the day, this type of reporting is the future of journalism. Everyone does some reporting. Great topic for another day.