Today we learned the identity of @MayorEmanuel. But perhaps there’s one more revelation concerning a fake Twitter account.
Enter Shani Hilton, a D.C. based journalist who is the associate editor of the Center for American Progress’s CampusProgress.org and the Washington correspondent for Colorlines magazine.
@DCJourno, the Twitter account that playfully teases Washington reporters everywhere has only used the bit.ly URL shortener on one occasion (excluding retweets of the shortened URLs of others).
“Hey @Awl, can I cite your use of ‘media elite’ in my official bio? Trying to get into Haddad’s garden party this year. The link.” That took you to an Awl article discussing, well, how great @DCJourno is.
The account associated with that bit.ly link? That of Hilton. The shortened URL was created on February 7, the same day she could have tweeted the above message, adding more evidence to the notion that she herself shortened it and it wasn’t, say, shortened by somebody else and she just cut and pasted it.
Now, there are two additionally curious things about this: First, The Awl article credits Hilton herself for alerting the site to just how “great” @DCJourno is (Choire Sicha writes at the bottom of the post: “Recommended by Shani Hilton, who is a person in DC you can follow where none of this insider business will occur!”). That leads to the second interesting point: If, in fact, Hilton is behind @DCJourno, there’s a delicious irony here. The account regular skewers self-promoting Washington journalists and yet Hilton herself was busy promoting her work to other websites. Even Washington parodiers, it seems, are just as bad as those that they parody.
We’re not bit.ly experts here, so is there the possibility that @DCJourno just so happened to copy and paste someone else’s bit.ly URL? Technically, sure.
We wrote Hilton for comment. Her response: “Hi Betsy. I have no interest in commenting for your story.”