New mogul Rupert Murdoch has joined the ranks of tweeters on the social media site Twitter. He has posted 17 messages to date.
The BBC reports that within three days the media tycoon's @rupertmurdoch account has attracted almost 55,000 followers. He joins his wife - Wendi Deng - who has been a member of the micro-blogging site for some time.
With many 'fake' Twitter accounts it was initially unclear if the account really belonged to the New Corporation chairman. CNN quoted Murdoch's biographer Michael Wolff as saying that it "could be brilliant News Corp PR operation... might be somebody who knows Murdoch, but it's not Rupert (he doesn't use a computer unassisted nor get his own email)". However, it was later confirmed that the account is genuine by one of Murdoch's spokeswomen: Daisy Dunlop of News International (as reported on the Business Insider).
One of Murdoch's first tweets, as MSN recounts was: "My resolutions, try to maintain humility and always curiosity. And of course diet!" Many of Murdoch's tweets, like many of the headlines on his tabloid newspapers, contain the ubiquitous exclamation mark.
At present Murdoch himself is only following four people: British entrepreneur and Amstrad founder Lord Alan Sugar; Zynga co-founder Mark Pincus; Twitter's executive chairman, and co-founder, Jack Dorsey; and what appears to be a spoof account relating to Google's chief executive Larry Page. Given that Murdoch is a figure with an equal amount of supporters and detractors, especially following the hacking scandal in the UK with led to the closure of his newspaper the News of the World, it is perhaps understandable that Murdoch himself his happy to tweet but less inclined to follow the comments of others.
There has been some speculation as to why the 80-year old billionaire has begun tweeting. The Guardian wonders if Murdoch is warming up to buy Twitter (or at least at stake in it). Last year Murdoch lost out in an attempt to buy Facebook. In the meantime, Murdoch seems to be tweeting like any regular user. As I complete this article, Murdoch's most recent tweet concerns his support for New York's Republican Mayor: "Great to see Mike Bloomberg getting some rewards for being New York's best mayor in memory!"
Time will tell if this is a passing fad or whether Murdoch will continue the pursuit, and, if he carries on, how opinionated his messages for the world of business and politics will become.