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Monday, April 6 4:51 AM ET

TechCrunch Reports Obama in Talks to Nationalize Twitter

By Brian Briggs - follow me @


San Francisco, CA - Michael Arrington reported on his start-up blog, TechCrunch, that solid sources have confirmed that Barack Obama is in late-stage talks with social media company Twitter about nationalizing the service.

Arrington thinks it's a wise move by the young start up company, because as a national utility they will have a monopoly on microblogging.

"Twitter has become so entrenched in people's live that it only makes sense to nationalize it," said Arrington. "They can have the full power of the government behind them to help build out their infrastructure."

Moments later several other blogs confirmed the story by reblogging what Arrington had posted, quoting liberally from his article. "It's a wise move by the young start up company," many, including the New York Times, said.

The news spread rapidly in the Twitterverse and caught many people off guard.

"I expected Google or someone else to buy them, not the US government," said one Twitterer.

Update: TechCrunch has posted more information stating that the talks may not be as late stage as they thought, but it's still going to happen. "People from Twitter and Obama's administration are now denying that any talks are taking place, but you'd expect that if a deal is imminent," said Arrington.

Several other blogs are now questioning the veracity of claim saying they "haven't heard anything about it in their Twitter feeds except for Arrington's post.

Update 2: Arrington now reports that Twitter may be talking to the government, but it may not be about nationalizing the service.

Update 3: Twitter may have just filed their taxes.

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Update 4: Arrington has now posted the he's certain Obama has a Twitter account and that it reaches a national audience. This may shake loose more information from the parties involved .

Update 5: Several blogs are now pointing and laughing at TechCrunch for posting a ridiculous story like this.

Update 6: Twitter co-founder Biz Stone said Twitter is not in talks with the government about nationalizing the service or in talks with the NSA about streaming all the Twitter data with location information into government servers. Those are both entirely untrue rumors.

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