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Marketplace’s Kai Ryssdal: Trump has Silicon Valley firms on Twitter watch

Here's what the radio host said at a 2017 economic outlook event hosted by the Chamber of Commerce and the Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank.

Kai Ryssdal speaking at the Chamber's Economic Outlook event. (Photo by Roberto Torres)

Per Marketplace host and reporter Kai Ryssdal, tech firms in Silicon Valley are in full on Trump Watch mode on Twitter.

“[Companies are] having their communications desks rising at 3 a.m. to keep an eye out for late-night blasts from the President-elect,” the journalist told a captive audience at the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce’s Economic Outlook ’17 event on Wednesday morning.

In other words, the firms don’t want to start the day getting blindsided by a scathing tweet from Trump, like the one about General Motors’ Mexico plant which stirred up a controversy earlier this month and, reportedly, caused the automaker to scrap the plans (though some analysts say the move had more to do with trends in the auto world.)

Ryssdal has been conducting a series of interviews in Pennsylvania to understand how places like Erie, Pa., showed up at the polls for President-elect Donald Trump after supporting Barack Obama for two straight terms. He pointed to one trend to watch in 2017: policy will be playing out more and more on social media.

“On any given day we’re watching industrial and economic policy being made free-form and in full stream-of-consciousness 140 characters at a time,” Ryssdal said, referring to Trump’s headline-making tweetstorms.

One school of thought, Ryssdal says, calls to ignore Trump’s blurbs. Don’t, he recommended.

“The man is the president-elect of the United States: he says something, and whether it’s a press conference, a statement or a tweet at 6 a.m., it is news.”

And though he made the disclaimer that he was not an economist, the broadcaster’s final note before the audience was a positive one.

Companies: NPR / Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia

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