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June 14, 2010

In Defense of Twittertising

A couple weeks ago, I was approached about adding the occasional advertisement to my Twitter feed. My response: an immediate yes.

Many of you probably read that and think, “I would never sell out like that,” but I thought to myself, “What took you so long?”

Those of you familiar with my television work are probably aware that I sometimes take work doing commercials. The reason I do this is because I enjoy money. Moreover, I need money to maintain my opulent (middle-class) lifestyle. Selling products for cash allows me the freedom to take less well-playing jobs like making soon-to-be-canceled television shows.

The situation with Twitter is no different. I provide a valuable service (a constant stream of dick jokes) to Twitter for free. As of today, I’ve written 2,655 tweets. That’s a lot of free material, all of it contributing to the entertainment of the 1.5 million people who follow me, as well as the multi-billion dollar capitalization of Twitter itself. When presented with an opportunity to get some return on my investment of time and energy, why not take it?

There will always be a group who become upset with their favorite actor/musician/writer/racecar driver/whatever when that person accepts money instead of remaining “pure.” I get that. I was probably like that too when I was sixteen. But the real world has a way of intruding on people’s ideals, and my mortgage doesn’t care that much about my indie cred.

Moreover, I suspect the people who scream the loudest about “selling out” would be very happy to accept the same money themselves. That’s not a knock on them – it’s just reality. People got bills, yo.

So yes, I will be throwing in the occasional advertisement into my Twitter feed. Just like a disc jockey reads ads and a television show airs commercials and blogs accept sponsorship. I’m sorry if it pisses anybody off, but if you are upset, I know what will make you feel better: a delicious Klondike bar washed down with an icy cold Sierra Mist.

Klondike bar original  Sierra Mist Logo_ad


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Dustin

As long as you Twittertise, I will have less respect for you and consider you a sell-out.

That is, until I get famous enough to get offers from advertisers interested in using my awesomeness to sell Viagra and dick cream.

@sidecarsally

tony Hartman

All you need to say is that your humor is a fucking valuable thing and you're not giving it away for free

Peter Coffin

Oh, come on. You know Twitter advertising kills the newly born and the unborn alike.

vodka logic

Sell out..no way I want to know how I can get in on the gig.

Grey goose would be nice..

I see Run Fatboy run on your side bar...great movie.

xx

@mglenbarker

He's a saint!

Mike

Nice pre-emptive strike on "the haterz."

See you at Comix.

Jamie

Tell the folks and klondike/sierra mist job well done. Now if you'll excuse me, it's time for my midday sierra/klondike smoothie.

Corey

What's the going rate for an adver-tweet these days?

Sartysarty

I saw your twitter feed as a way of free advertising for YOU: getting your humor out there to people who may not be exposed to it otherwise. I guess that's why I'm a bit surprised that you are advertising for others on top of it. I'm not mad or anything, I'm just surprised. But hey, good for you for being industrious!

J.Rai

Makes sense.

billyverde

I don't see that you're doing anything different from what I'm doing, except that I don't get paid when I announce that I'm chowing down on Trader Joe's Chile & Lime Cashews as I watch Breaking Bad on AMC as I finish a few laps around the track in my ASIS running shoes. Oh woe is me. At least I can drown my sorrows in Jameson Irish Whiskey.

billyverde

Oh crap... I spelled 'ASICS' wrong, and my grammar is horrible. Anyone got a spare copy of Hooked on Phonics?

Bobby

I wouldn't consider this selling out. If you stopped telling dick jokes because the advertiser asked you to, that's a different story. If I was in a position to make money from tweeting your god damn right I would.

Hopefully now you can fund another season of MMHI from your tweetvertising money!

Samcheck

@billyverde
That's why he gets paid and you do not.

Darren

You did not sell out. It was my local grocer who sold out of Klondike bars.

Chase Roper

You've just given me hope that I too could make money with Twitter. But do I have to get the canceled TV shows first?

Laurie

I say go for it. Pay the mortgage and keep making us laugh. I'm just really pissed no one cares to have me advertise for them. Maybe I should just pick some giant corporation, start advertising and bill them. They might accidentally pay me!

Michele

I can't imagine people actually getting pissed that you're deciding to do some occasional twittertising. Who would actually gripe about someone being a "sellout" just for being incredibly funny and getting to make money off that. I would hope that most of your fans would be mature enough to see it your way, Michael. I wish I could make tons of money for making clever, funny quips.

david marshall

LOL

twittertising > indy cred

fakename

as long as the tweets are funny, i will buy whatever you hawk.*

*i.e. the holiday hawk made me try sierra mist. tasted like piss, but i will always give you and gaffigan the benefit of the doubt.

Reen

It's all your fault. A steady diet of hilarious freebies only served to spoil your fans and give them a case of big mouth/fat ass. And this is how they repay you for your generous service. With backlash.

Well there's a new Mayor in town. And he's calling the note. And you know what else? He's going to make them "pay the Piper Laurie", baby.

Mmmm-hmm.

Bekah

Do as many commercials as you need to get Stella back on the air!

suzanna

Money money money money *high pitched voice* MONAY!!1

Do whatcha gotta do, babe.

(that sounded creepery)

Jaime

a. Jamie! It's me Jaime! What's up soul-sistah! Or brotha! Whichever one you are! (you never can tell with us jay-me's)

ii. Michelle, did you just call us mature?? Interesting perspective. I remain indubitably and inexorably unconvinced. [faaart.]

3. Michael, I agree with cleverly-titled fakename. I will not say douchey things about selling out to you because your hawking is funny. It makes me want to eat/drink things with a smile. Hawk away. Hawk loogies. I will buy them. And drink them. While smiling.

Bailey

I use Twitter to promote myself and the things I do, and that's pretty much what everyone does. But we don't do it for money, we do it because we want others to think we're important and awesome. But they aren't...I am. So follow me @justkiddingiamuselessandprobablydrunkandthisisnotmytwitteraccountatall. Thanks for your time! And I'm still waiting for free pie from Baker Square because I tweeted about that once.

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