In its haste to make it look like it had everything in hand following its firing of high-profile anchor Keith Olbermann today, Current TV made a fairly embarrassing faux pas: It promoted the wrong Twitter ID for the mercurial Olbermann's replacement, former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer.
It would be one thing if the Internet TV channel had simply given out an incorrect Twitter ID. But according to Mediabistro, Spitzer doesn't even have a Twitter account. Current TV has been suitably red-faced in the aftermath of the ID mishap, telling Mediabistro, "Our apologies that this was incorrect in the release."
Which suggests that someone in Current TV's public relations department is soon going to be needing a primer in how to actually use social media. And how to write apologies. A more appropriate mea culpa might have been, "Our apologies to Governor Spitzer for not having asked him if he even used Twitter before sending out our release. And the owner of @ESpitzer can thank us for sending loads of new followers his or her way."
Twitter, of course, is an altogether too easy place to send out information, and sometimes in peoples' haste, they make mistakes that can have unfortunate results. The people at the wrong end of Spike Lee's recent tweet broadcasting the incorrect address of Trayvon Martin's alleged shooter, George Zimmerman, certainly understand that.
For now, though, Current TV is probably looking for some graceful way to emerge from the fallout over Olbermann's departure -- he says he's suing, and the channel is first going to have to take flak (and handle some laughter) over the Twitter flap.
But one person who should know how to handle controversy is Spitzer, who famously had to resign as governor after a sex scandal. Perhaps he could educate Current on crisis management.