Archive for May, 2013

So you want to be a journalist in the 21st Century? Lesson 1: Learn to love Social Media

May 7, 2013 Leave a comment

Twitter Handle: @touche_tomshea

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As a consumer of social media, I would say it is a great way to help me write a story. Because the people that I followed were all baseball writers and reporters, their inside information would be a great tool for me to get the scoop on the latest breaking stories, and would offer a variety of different opinions and takes on certain matters. Also, if I were to follow other writers and reporters, then I could get their perspective, perhaps some non-sports perspectives, that would allow for any story that I write to appreciate a macro-perspective. Their ability to retweet where they got their information from would allow me to trust, or not trust, what they are saying, and if their source is trustworthy, I can then follow their source, thereby eliminating the middle man, and helping me get my story out sooner.
As a curator, I wanted to incorporate a mix of both reputable and personal reports from the event. I was glad I was able to use some from places like The Mirror and the Connecticut Post, as that information is more trustworthy than a random student or person saying it. However, I also wanted to get the regular people’s perspectives, as they were eyewitnesses to it all, and proved the quotes and opinions that are good to have in any news story. The transitional paragraphs helped my story flow better because without them, it appears just to be a collection of pictures and videos and tweets, with a general theme, but nothing to really connect them. The way I used the social media components and the transitional paragraphs created a chronological angle for the story, as I was able to explain why I included the video at the beginning, even though it is from two years ago. Then I was able to trace the events of the day by using both the transitions and the social media aspects to describe what was happening at particular times.
As a creator, I have been live-tweeting events and games for The Mirror all year long, so this was nothing really new for me. Tweeting a sporting event is usually pretty simple, as you just have to describe the action in front of you, and they really provide the story, without you having to do much digging or interviewing people. The game went off without a hitch, and it was even Senior Day, allowing for more of a story to come from it. I had no issues at all doing it, and will continue to do it in the future, and encourage all Mirror writers to do it for any event they cover, as it gives the readers a much better and up to date experience.

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