Saving a City via Twitter: Newark Mayor Cory Booker’s 5 Rules

Mayor Cory Booker of Newark, New Jersey has over 1.3 million Twitter followers – more than his city’s population. He has been described as “charismatic and social network savvy”, and is extremely active on Twitter.

But Booker isn’t tweeting as an after-work social activity – he’s growing his city, building community, making connections, and helping people in need.

What does the Mayor of Newark tweet about? Everything from weddings he is attending to answering questions on Reddit to personally responding about someone’s permit question about a block party.

In a recent article from NBC News Technology, “super mayor” Cory Booker gave 5 Twitter tips, mentioned below and explained in more detail here.

Mayor Booker’s 5 Rules for Twitter

  • “Do not erase a tweet ever.”
  • “I always try to retweet my critics.” 
  • “Tweeting isn’t extra. It’s a priority.”
  • “You never know the power of a random act of kindness.”
  • “Change the discussion.”

“Democracy is not a spectator sport.”

The Mayor is also active with a direct question and answer system called #AskCory. The answers also appear on his website (the screenshot image to the right is an example from CoryBooker.com).

Booker is surprised that other politicians have “not caught on to the power of social networking”. I also find it surprising (though it is not only politicians that surprise me for not fully adopting social media). Still, proud to say that I helped Brampton Mayor Susan Fennell create her Twitter account, which she has become very active on!

Embracing his active role online, the Mayor gave a presentation at this year’s SXSW (South by Southwest Interactive) in Austin called The Media Politician.

Mayor Booker continues to do a great job engaging both his constituants and the greater community – including those (such as myself) that admire both his social media efforts and dedication to helping others and building stronger communities.

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