On his way to Silicon Valley to try to lure investment eastward and learn lessons to apply to Russia’s own nascent tech hub of Skolkovo
, President Dmitry Medvedev paid a visit to Twitter headquarters.
Known as a technology buff, Medvedev quipped in April that he and U.S. President Barack Obama should avoid delays in communication by switching to text messages. But now, they might as well start tweeting. Medvedev, perhaps in an attempt to embody the modernizing spirit that Russia’s economy so desperately needs, has taken the plunge and opened a Twitter account (@KremlinRussia
Flanked by Twitter co-founders Evan Williams and Biz Stone, the Russian president typed out his first tweet: “Всем привет! Я в Твиттере и это мое первое сообщение!” (“Hello to everyone! I am now on Twitter and this is my first message.”) Actually, the word “мое” was followed by the number 6 in the Russian president’s message. But there were no typos in his subsequent tweets, which announced his itinerary for the day (visits to Apple, Russian Google competitor Yandex, and Cisco), his high opinion of San Francisco, and even a link to a photo showing an impressive view from his hotel room.
The Russian president has thousands of followers on Twitter already. With the “reset” riding high, don’t be surprised to see him following Obama, or vice versa.
-- Richard Solash
UPDATE: The @BarackObama and @whitehouse Twitter accounts have sent a welcome tweet to @KremlinRussia -- or rather, to @KremlinRussia_E, Medvedev's new English-language account. As predicted, the presidents' accounts are also now following each other.