Opinion: Social nyets rundown: Russian president Medvedev tours Twitter, sends his first tweet

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'Всем привет! Я в Твиттере и это мое6 первое сообщение!’

No, it’s not what you hamfistedly drunk-tweeted late last night, nor is it the latest in computer coding wizardry. And we’re pretty certain it’s not the code to deploy Russia’s arsenal of nuclear warheads.

It’s the historic first tweet ever by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev @KremlinRussia_E who on Wednesday toured Twitter HQ in Silicon Valley with Gavin Newsom, the mayor of San Francisco, recent winner of the Democratic nod in California’s lieutenant governor race.


The official visit was part of Russia’s attempt to haul its lumbering technological infrastructure into the 20th Century (sic), drum up support for a project to establish a Silicon Valley in a Moscow suburb called Skolkovo, and establish links with new-economy powerhouses Cisco, Google and Facebook, while picking up some money-making tips from Twitter. Ahem.
‘Hello everyone, I’m at Twitter and sending my first message,’ Medvedev tweeted during his visit, which is....

... a loose translation of the Russian above. Medvedev was met at Cisco HQ by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who retweeted the Russian’s original tweet: Congrats to President Medvedev on his first tweet! 'Всем привет! Я в Твиттере и это мое6 первое сообщение!’ (via @KremlinRussia)

The White House also welcomed – and retweeted -- Medvedev’s first tweet ahead of his visit to Washington on Thursday. Ever the campaigner, Newsom also posted a pic of himself with Medvedev alongside his post: Touring Twitter earlier this morning with President Medvedev.

During his visit, Medvedev also stopped by Silicon Valley staple Printers Inc. Cafe, Reuters reports, where it is not known whether he bought a cup of coffee to sip slowly for three hours while monopolizing the free Internet bandwidth downloading the speeches of his once, current and future leader, Vladimir Putin.

Addressing a gathering of Stanford University tech prospects, Medvedev said he was ‘inspired’ by what he saw in Silicon Valley.
‘It is indeed very impressive,’ he said. ‘It can impress even a president. In a way I’m sort of jealous of all of you present here, you have an opportunity to be creative, to teach, to make money, to do something you love, and quickly see your work yielding fruit. What is it, if not happiness.’

A red-letter day for Twitter, indeed.

-- Craig Howie

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