Bill Clinton: Not a Tweet Tonight

For a guy whose vice president “invented” the Internet, Bill Clinton isn’t so savvy with social media: He doesn’t have a personal Twitter account.

When the former president takes the stage tonight, it’ll be up to the millions of Twitter users who have been following the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte to spread his message on the social media Web site.

By this afternoon, the volume of tweets about the convention in Charlotte had reached 4 million, equaling the messages sent over the course of the entire Republican National Convention last week in Tampa, Twitter reported in — of course — a tweet.

Social media, barely on any politician’s radar four years ago, is on display at these conventions, with speakers aiming for “retweets” on Twitter and “likes” on Facebook.

So far first lady Michelle Obama and actor turned director turned improv political comedian Clint Eastwood have been the biggest social media stars of the conventions. The first lady’s speech last night prompted about 28,000 tweets-per-minute and boosted both her own and her husband’s popularity, according to the daily Twitter Political Index.

And Tampa’s surprise Eastwood cameo inspired a spoof  Twitter account, @InvisibleObama, addressing an empty chair as if it were seating the president.

Twitter will measure the impact of Clinton’s speech even though the former president won’t be tweeting excerpts of it. (His Clinton Foundation does have an account, but it appears to stay away from election politics.)

Clinton’s not totally unhip to social media: He has a Facebook page with 820,000 “likes.”

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