New York Times interview for Twitter "suggested user list" story today

Here’s my full email to Brian Stelter for his story on the Twitter
suggested user list.
best j
———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Jason Calacanis
Date: Thu, Jun 11, 2009 at 3:08 PM
Subject: Re: NYT interview request
To: Brian Stelter
> How do you view the suggested users list? (Is it a positive addition to
> Twitter, a troubling one, a valuable one, etc?)
It’s great feature for new users because they get to start with a
dozen or two vibrant followers as opposed to a blank screen.
However, it’s fairly obviously that being on this list is very, very
valuable so there are some early users who were bummed they were not
included. I was the #2 user on Twitter behind Obama in the early days
and I didn’t make the cut, but I don’t care. The fact that almost
70,000 follow my tweets is still mind blowing to me!
It’s funny, I get a couple of emails from celebrities asking me to
reach out to Twitter on their behalf to get on this list.
> What were your reasons for offering $250,000 to be on it? Was your offer
> sincere?
It was half performance art and half real. If they took it I would
have paid for it to promote our service (not my
personal account). If they had taken the money I would have two or
three million followers on that account and the $250,000 would have
been only .10 a follower–a bargain!
> Do you believe Twitter will ever monetize it?
They would be well within their right to monetize it because it’s 100%
opt-in. However, I think they have 100 other ways to make money–like
a payment system and professional accounts–and they will go after
those first.
At the end of the day this feature was for the benefit of new users
and in that way it is a huge success. It has a secondary effect of
showing folks the power of twitter–and watching celebrities beg to be
on the list–does hint at the power of the “Twitter dialtone.”
best j
> Brian Stelter
> Reporter, The New York Times
[jc-mahalo twitter]
[jc-mahalo new-york-times]

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