Tag Archives: Social Media

Just Saying No to Social Media? That Could Hurt Your Local News Career

Need one more piece of evidence that knowing social media’s increasingly part of being in the media?  Well, Twitter-resister, listen up:  “Learn to organize and socialize,” writes Deborah Potter on her Advancing the Story blog.  Potter argues in a shrinking pool of local TV news jobs, people who have multimedia skills have the edge, no matter how good your walk-and-talk liveshots are:  “In the digital journalism context, it means knowing how to organize information from a variety of sources and how to push information out via social media, from Digg to Twitter and beyond.”

The Poynter Institute’s Joe Grimm says with so many experienced journalists competing for fewer and fewer jobs, the folks doing the hiring want that “something extra,” and the newsers who have it get the gigs:  “Increasingly, recruiters are looking for that X factor, X being for extra. What can you do in addition to your base skills? Can you make a slideshow, gather audio, shoot video? Can you help us grow?”

Mike Elgan:  Loves Twitter, Hates "Bad TV News"

Mike Elgan: Loves Twitter, Hates "Bad TV News"

And then there’s Mike Elgan’s argument:  social media, more and more, does news better than old media do:  “Almost every day, I take a break or two from my PC, where I’m constantly monitoring social media, and I check out CNN, MSNBC, and Fox news or, if it’s the right time of day, the network news on ABC, CBS and NBC. I’m always appalled by what I see on TV news. It’s pathetic.”

Elgan says local and cable newsers are trying social media, but not in ways that take advantage of the immediacy and power of the emerging social media platforms.  It’s worth a read.  And one more argument to at least go and get on Twitter.  With the other guy Twittering his brains out making connections and finding stories, you’re truly hurting yourself by sitting on the sidelines.

But hey.  Use your best judgment.

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I Give You a Hot Tip, You Flatter Me in Public: That Something You Might Be Interested In?

Seen This Before? If Not, It's Time to Get On the Twitter Stick

As a career reporter, I’m just not in the habit of surrendering information except in the form of stories, hopefully the kind that grab viewers’ attention, and send assignment editors and managers at competing stations into fits of swearing and desk-kicking as their run to their Nextels to scream at their reporters, asking why they didn’t get what I just had.  (Happens mostly in dreams, but it’s still a nice feeling)

At any rate, I’m willing to reveal an insider’s goldmine to all you local newsers who, maybe like me, agonize about the morning meeting and the inevitable glare of the news director with his, “and what’ve you got to offer today?”  Lately, I’ve had more to bring to the table.  And I’m going to tell you how I’ve done it.  And yeah, snarky tech-resisters, it involves Twitter.  So if you can’t handle that, just scroll on down and look at the pretty pictures of news choppers.

But before I go into detail, there’s a catch.  I’m going to want something in return.  So, to quote Bob Ryan on HBO’s “Entourage,” is that something you might be interested in?  If so, read on.

On Monday nights, for the Twitterati who find themselves suddenly putting ampersands before people’s names out of Twitter habit, the gathering known as #journchat has become a crowded, rowdy, and deeply informative experience.  Journalists, PR pros, and bloggers gather in on Twitter to ask questions of each other–to say, in essense, hey, give me hand here, what are YOU people all about?  The Q&A brings down walls and leads to a lot of common ground, funny lines, and–get this–story ideas.

Is That Something You Might Be Interested In?

"Is That Something You Might Be Interested In?"

If you’ve ever read a press release (and we all have) and wondered, “who the hell writes this crap,” well, an hour or two talking free-form and no-holds-barred with PRs can be revealing.  Many of them just don’t know what journos want or need.  You like phone calls or emails?  I recently griped about the hit-every-email-in-box-in-the-damn-newsroom syndrome with a “just between you and me” story pitch.  You go in, you say, “hey, I heard from somebody…” and stop when the other reporters smirk and eventually say in unison, “we got that email too.”  FAIL.

Anyway, my advice to you:  get on the Twitter, and check it out. (And while you’re there, don’t forget to follow me: www.twitter.com/standupkid)

Now.  Payback.  Next Monday, #journchat’s taking nominees for a guest moderator.  I think it’s time a local newser took the helm for a night, and with your help, I.  Can.  Be.  That.  Man.  All I ask?  Comment on this post and let the world know why I’m (just talking points here–you know, to guide your thinking) witty, smart, fair, and profoundly gifted at anticipating the changes roiling the world of local tv news–and PR.  Or something like that.

The deadline is Wednesday.  A raft of rave comments will–hopefully–show a groundswell of support for me as the next moderator du jour.  So, you know, throw a guy a bone.  If you want.  I’d appreciate it.  And even if you don’t, come join #journchat next Monday and learn some new stuff about PR, tv news, blogging and social media that might help you keep your job for another week or so.

So.  Tell me.  Is that something you might be interested in?

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Sure, Rick Does It, But Should You? Local News Anchors, Reporters and Twitter

CNN’s Rick Sanchez recently Twittered his way through knee surgery: “The IV is in!” Just one more way the ex-WSVN/Miami anchor has carved a unique niche for himself as the most Twittering of TV types. But he’s hardly the only one.

Last night I had a chat with a reporter in Kansas Twittering his way through a small town city council meeting. And yes, they were tweeting back in rural Kansas. The question is, are you? Or, as Mike Elgan writes in NetworkWorld: should you? “Is it OK for reporters and editors to tweet live events? By doing so, the news is already out there by the time colleagues get out of the event and back to their laptops. Is that fair?”

Take a moment and check out Twitter if you haven’t already. Odds are one of the stations in your market has a Twitter account, and uses it to create a unique connection between viewer, station, and in many cases, talent. Reporters tweet about the various behind-the-scenes screwups that befall us each and every day, and apparently, some Twittering viewers love that stuff.

I’ve seen other anchors tweeting out some pretty lame stuff: “Off to anchor the news at 5! Watch me on Action News 7!” Yay. Neat. Un-follow.

Rick Sanchez/CNN

Rick Sanchez/CNN

And Elgin’s no fan of on-set, in-show Twittering, a la Rick Sanchez.  “CNN has gone Twitter-mad, with several anchors featuring Twitter answers on screen, including and especially Rick Sanchez . I even saw CNN promote an upcoming segment by showing the anchor typing a question into the Twitter “What are you doing?” box in real time.  Integrating Twitter into TV news was novel at first, but do viewers really want to turn on the TV to watch the news anchor using another medium?”

How are you using Twitter? And–I hate to even bring this up for fear of giving up my advantage–but are you, as I am, getting stories through Twitter? (it’s a goldmine) Share your experiences.

Read Mike Elgan’s take here.

UPDATE:  An interesting take today from Steve Rubel’s MicroPersuasion:  “The upshot is that today it’s impossible to draw a line between social media and traditional media – it’s all one.”  Read the entire post here.

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Filed under Local News 2.0, Social Media