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NASA, Curiosity Rover Awarded For Best Government Use Of Social Media

Apr 10, 2013 11:09 AM EDT

Monday NASA's official Twitter feed, @NASA, won the Shorty Award for best government use of social media for the second year in a row.

It makes sense that NASA is awarded for brevity. The space agency makes full use of acronyms to simplify its often lengthy official names for projects and divisions, c.f., the orbiter MESSENGER is short for MErcury Suface, Space ENvironment, GEochemistry and Ranging.

Now in its fifth year, the Shorty Awards honor the best use of social media on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, YouTube, Foresquare and others.

For its acceptance tweet, NASA kept it short.

"We're sharing the universe 1 tweet at a time. Be inspired! Follow @NASA & RT if you love science & space. #ShortyAwards." 

The Mars Curiosity rover (@MarsCuriosity) was also reportedly recognized as "Foresquare Mayor of the Year" for its use of the mobile application Foresquare to check in to locations it has been exploring on Mars. Fans can also follow Curiosity on Foresquare and keep up with the rover's photos and posts.

The Curiosity rover account is also nominated for two Webby awards this year. 

NASA reports it now has five Shorty awards. Including Monday's honors and last year's award, the agency was also recognized in 2009 for its Twitter coverage for the Mars Phoenix Lander mission and in 2011 for astronaut Doug Wheelock's "Moon from Space" picture.

According to NASA there are more than 500 social media accounts under the agency's umbrealla that it uses to communitate its mission. The NASA Twitter account has 3.8 million followers, the largest Twitter following of any federal government agency. 

A full list of Shorty Award winners is here

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