I’m Not a Robot: Engaging Local News Readers on Social Media

Next week, the Digital First Interactives team is heading to Connecticut to do a training extravaganza at the New Haven Register. Data Editor Tom Meagher is giving training on data journalism, Video Editor Yvonne Leow on video and video strategy, and Curation Editor Julie Westfall on breaking news workflows and storytelling. I’ll be giving some focused training on social media – particularly on making it more, well, social.

I’ve had many an editor begrudgingly admit there’s a recurring problem with their reporter and newsrooms Twitter accounts being a little too….robotic. As in, they mimic an RSS feed with a full stream of headline-and-link tweets. No retweets, no questions, no fun.

So I’m looking for some fresh examples of tweets sent by individual local reporters and newsroom accounts that really seek to engage readers around the news. I’ve been collecting some examples in the Storify below, but I’d love suggestions of [...]

That Post About the Lack of Posts

One of the challenges of working in an experimental company in a changing industry is that you yourself have to constantly learn and evolve. For the past few months, I’ve been in a new role at Digital First that forces me outside my professional comfort zone every day – I’m managing talented people and projects that are sometimes beyond my (initial) comprehension.

Some days, this is the best part of the job, other days it is the worst – as it is both exciting and exhausting. A lot of other journalists and new managers out there know what I mean.

There are days when all I want to do is draft some tweets, push some stories through production, build a few slideshows and plan a news budget – tasks I feel very confident completing after years of doing them day in and day out. Instead, I wake up and see [...]

Thank you, ONA-ers

I was delighted at the news today that I was elected to the Online News Association Board. Thank you to all who voted for me – and those who supported me even if you aren’t yet ONA members. Now on to the hard part: Actually pulling off some of my big ideas. Luckily, the board is full of good journalists who I trust will work with me along the way.

Addressing the Elephant in the Conference Hall

ONA has a range of skills going from former print reporters getting into social media or online tools up to some of the industry’s innovation leaders in data, multimedia, social media and mobile. We need a conference that reflects this range and challenges every skill level. [...]

DIY Journalism: Let’s Make a Batch o’ Programmers

hack-inside

ONA should take a role in shaping curricula at journalism schools to create more programer-journalist hybrids for the future of the industry. [...]

This Little Light O’ Mine: ONA, Let it Shine

Lifesaver

Anyone who wants to try something new should get support and encouragement, no matter where they live. Whether they want to lead changes in their local newsrooms or take on new challenges in larger markets, ONA should be helping these journalists along. [...]

Throwing my hat into the ring for journalism’s future

teaching

I’ve met a lot of innovative, hungry journalists in my travels with Digital First and as a freelance journalism trainer. These journalists are often the primary source of digital support in their newsrooms, but they need support, too. Here’s what I propose ONA do to reach and support this group. [...]

Lessons Learned From An Old Dog Who Excelled at New Tricks

Ron Liebau

I recently lost a good friend and journalism lost one hell of an editor in Ron Liebau. He should be an inspiration to all journalists trying to move our industry to the future instead of worrying on the past. Here are some lessons from Ron we should all take to heart. [...]

The Social Media Wire Brings The Immediacy, You Bring the Feedback

Social Media Wire on nhregister.com

Digital First Media’s Social Media Wire combines selected local Twitter accounts, social searches, news feeds, blogs and videos to give readers a new way to find and interact with immediate local news from a variety of sources. [...]

Introducing Digital First’s Curation Team: Now on to the Hard Part

Julie Westfall, Angela Carter and Karen Workman will be leading Digital First Media’s curation efforts at the local and national level. [...]

As Outsourced News Grows, Local Newsrooms Should Promote ‘Buying Local’

manufacturing-assembly-line-in-china

Journatic is selling outsourced news at the expense of U.S. journalism jobs, but local news operations should take this opportunity to promote themselves to readers as the truly local option. [...]

TechCrunch Writer Demonstrates How NOT to Engage Readers

Alexia Tsotsis’ highly unprofessional rants against “old media” and eventually her site’s own readers lead to a highly professional discussion amongst journalists about dealing with trolls on the web. [...]