On Saturday, when it doesn't, frankly, have much else to do, the Internet was abuzz with the fact that that CBS Films, the distributor of Joel and Ethan Coen's Inside Llewyn Davis, had taken out a full-page ad in the New York Times consisting of a single tweet by critic A.O. Scott, as well as a ton of white space. Not even a whole tweet, in fact, but a version that was shortened considerably. Scott's original tweet read as follows:
You all keep fighting about Wolf of Wall St. and Am Hustle. I'm gonna listen to the Llewyn Davis album again. Fare thee well, my honeys.— a. o. scott (@aoscott) December 31, 2013
As the Times' public editor Margaret Sullivan explained in a post, Llewyn producer Scott Rudin wanted to avoid the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' prohibitions against criticizing other films in contention for Oscar nominations. So Rudin, through publicist Cynthia Swartz, asked for permission to shorten the tweet. Scott's answer was short and to the point:
Well this is a new one. I’d prefer though that my tweets not be used in advertisements. That seems like a slippery slope and contrary to the ad hoc and informal nature of the medium.
And changing the tweet is basically manufacturing a quote, something I avoid.
So I’m afraid the answer is no.