The Federal Reserve is working toward monitoring Facebook and Twitter to find out what people online are saying about the government bank's discount rate, open market operations and overall monetary policy. Do we tell them now that no one on Facebook or Twitter has ever given a shit about any of those things, or leave it for a surprise?
The Fed put out a request for proposal for "Sentiment Analysis and Social Media Monitoring Solution," so that they can track the "reach and spread" of their press releases on Facebook, Twitter, and even YouTube. The problem is, that sort of spread doesn't happen. Certainly people have tweeted and Facebooked various bits of misguided outrage over quantitative easing, but only in the service of, say, electing Ron Paul or trashing the president or pissing off liberal relatives or whatever. No one actually cares about the Federal Reserve's actual business, on Facebook. And they won't, unless Ben Bernanke goes all Peter Orszag on us.