For Techmeme, the move seems like an obvious extension of the site’s existing Twitter-based news tip system. This should bring in a fresh, fast source of news. Tweets will also be incorporated in the discussion and commentary sections under each headline. And Techmeme usually tries to highlight the publication that first broke a story, so adding Twitter is almost a requirement, since so much tech news (be it an official announcement, accidental announcement, rumor, or otherwise) surfaces first on the microblogging site, rather than on blogs or in traditional news publications.
Beyond Techmeme itself, I’m curious to see whether this will change the way reporters cover the tech world. I know I’m not the only tech writer who’s kind of obsessed with the site, and who sees links to my stories on Techmeme as an important form of validation — even though those links usually aren’t a big source of traffic. If you want to get a tech blogger riled up, ask him about the times he felt overlooked by the site’s editors. (Techmeme headlines are selected through a mix of automation and human curation, but when you’re mad about something, it’s easy to convince yourself that there’s a mean editor behind it.)
So as reporters keep aiming for Techmeme fame, I imagine they might do more tweeting as they’re covering breaking news or working on big scoops. (Shoot, maybe I should have tweeted about this first.) I also wonder if we might see a little less of the race to publish stories when a company tweets some news. Most bloggers want to publish first, but once something is on Twitter, it’s even more clear now you’re racing for second place — at least on Techmeme.
You can read more about how to get a tweet onto Techmeme in founder Gabe Rivera’s blog post. (That’s Rivera in the picture above.)