U.S. Senate Hopeful Cory Booker Sits Down For Watershed Instagram Interview With NowThis News

By Jennifer Moire 

New Jersey U.S. Senate candidate and Twitter phenom Cory Booker sat down for an Instagram interview Sunday night that continues through the week. NowThis News, which claims to be the first and only mobile and social original news network, said the Booker interview is the first Instagram interview with a U.S. politician.

Booker, the mayor of Newark, N.J., appears to be the perfect guest for an inaugural social media moment. He’s a Twitter star, and his age and good looks make him an appealing guest for the original news site’s millennial audience.

Booker’s Twitter feed is legendary. Newark residents know they can reach the highly responsive mayor on the microblogging site when there’s a fire, a snowstorm, or just to air a complaint, and he’ll respond — himself. He also regularly posts inspirational quotes and tweets late into the night.

Followers can check in for one question per day all week with Booker by following @NowThisNews.

In case you were wondering, the first question, “How are you different from Gov. Chris Christie?,” is generating lots of interesting feedback. It was long rumored that Booker might challenge Christie for the top executive office in the Garden State.

AllFacebook spoke with Ed O’Keefe, editor-in-chief of NowThis News, about the Instagram interview, or what he terms an “Instaview,” and he said:

We really feel like we’re pioneering the effort. We view (Instagram) as a serious outlet for all of our news.

O’Keefe added that NowThis News started the Instagram interview format on or about Aug. 9, when the feature was added by Facebook to Instagram. With the ability to edit and upload video, its ability to create original reporting “increased dramatically,” he said.

On the web site, O’Keefe said NowThis News has featured other politicians, including a recent interview with Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), who discussed his position on Syria, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), who spoke about the five-year anniversary of the financial collapse Monday.

O’Keefe added:

(NowThis News is) very serious about this effort of making Vine and Instagram a source for video news (and) a way to connect with the audience that likes to consume content (this way).

With two reporters in its Washington, D.C., bureau, the plan is to expand beyond politics and into entertainment and other areas of hard and soft news.

Readers: Would you participate in an Instagram interview?