Go Ahead, Quote My Tweet

Via: Tuned In

Movie critics are used to being blurbed in ads, but not like this. New York Times movie critic A.O. Scott opened the newspaper he writes for Saturday to find a full-page ad for the movie Inside Llewyn Davis, almost all white space except for a tweet Scott wrote. Or, rather, part of the tweet. Here’s the original: You all keep fighting about Wolf of Wall St. and Am Hustle. I'm gonna listen to the Llewyn Davis album again. Fare thee well, my honeys.— a. o. scott (@aoscott) December 31, 2013 The ad left out the first sentence mentioning competing films. Apparently this was not a complete surprise to Scott, who told the Times’ public editor Margaret Sullivan that CBS Films contacted him for permission to truncate and use the tweet. He said no; they did it anyway. Did CBS Films do something wrong here? Yes. And no. Yes, because the studio formatted the ad to make it appear like it was reprinting Scott’s complete tweet, unedited. It appeared exactly as a full tweet would on Twitter. Obviously reviews get excerpted all the time for ads, but this isn’t like pulling a sentence from a review. It’s more like taking a full review, removing the paragraphs that don’t serve your business purposes, and formatting it to look like a complete, unedited newspaper clip. (On Twitter, when you edit a quoted Tweet for space, etiquette says to use “MT,” for “modified tweet.”) Now this wasn’t exactly like changing “If you’ve swallowed poison and need to induce vomiting, this is the perfect movie” to “THIS IS THE PERFECT MOVIE!” Scott wrote what he wrote, and is on record putting Llewyn Davis atop his best-of-2013 list. But the edit changes the tweet’s context, tone, and meaning. The original says that listening to the soundtrack beats listening to an endless argument over movies; the edit sounds like an unbidden gush of love for the soundtrack. (It appears the studio wanted to cut the opening sentence because of rules against slagging awards competitors. Too bad; that

Read full story at: Tuned In

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