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. [...]

Growing Your Audience: Advice from Bloggers and Readers

Collecting your advice on engaging readers and growing audiences on blogs. [...]

Kick It Old School: Engaging Your Community Through Live Chats

group-chat

The live chat is, in a sense, the original social media. Here are a few best practices and tips to reintroduce you to this kinda old school tool. [...]

How to Set Up A Chat Using CoveritLive

Cover It Live

Step-by-step directions for setting up a live chat between readers and panelists using CoveritLive. [...]

Holy engagement, Batman! How HuffPost blew up the State of the Union on Facebook

How did The Huffington Post get 32,694 Likes, 2,525 comments and 4,268 shares on Facebook for Obama’s State of the Union address? How about a sort of Facebook take on live-tweeting? It was an experiment, to be sure, but it seemed to work out well. [...]

What if we’d had today’s social media on 9/11?

If today’s social media had been around, those who perished on September 11, 2001 could have been the storytellers of their own history. [...]

Why we should reply to users – even angry ones

Do you respond to your news org’s detractors?

Sure, we all talk about how engagement is SO IMPORTANT and we want to work with our readers, but when it comes to criticism, I so often hear social media coordinators or newsroom editors say, “Eh, I just ignore them, no point in replying.” Not so.

First of all, keep in mind, there are two types of detractors you’re likely dealing with here: Trolls and complainers. Complainers can be turned into fans – or at least neutral parties – but trolls will always be trolls, no matter what you do. While it can be difficult to sort through your hate mail/comments to find those that would benefit from a reply, it’s worth it if you can change at least one mind.

Case in point: Last Friday, we at The Huffington Post, along with every other news outlet, posted Sarah Palin’s emails from [...]

Lessons to be learned from TBD: International Edition

During my professional sabbatical in the month of April, I had the opportunity to travel to Moscow, Russia to talk with Eurasian journalists about community engagement.

This is my name in Cyrillic!

On April 22-24, the New Eurasia Media Program held its annual International Conference, where I, along with other journalists and bloggers from around the world, shared experiences and tools around the theme of “The local newspaper in the middle of the action”. I also gave a post-conference workshop on social media tools to a smaller group of Russian journalists (but that’s another post).

My presentation looked at the idea and launch of TBD, focusing specifically on ideas that worked and what, ultimately, led to it’s shift away from the original mission. I wanted to give attendees some good ideas they could try out at their newspapers amid the doom and gloom of a startup that didn’t exactly [...]

The Bin Laden story and real-time engagement

Please allow me to think aloud on the past 15 hours.

We all acknowledge that the news of Osama bin Laden’s death broke on social media. We’ve all got stories about Twitter’s impact, roundups of Twitter reactions, tweet timelines and Storification galore – but did anyone in the heat of the developing news last night start engaging readers on the spot? (This is not a rhetorical question, I actually want to know.)

I’m seeing a lot of the same curation sets of the same tweets or calls out for “tell us where you were or how you found out” second-day stories. These seem to be late reactions or pallid imitations of the wonderful, shared experience many Americans had in real-time on social media channels last night. What could we do better?

The story – and most initial reactions to it – were played out in the Twitter timeline before any [...]

Making community engagement an everyday process

This presentation is aimed at reporters to help them better connect with audiences, brand themselves and work more efficiently in the social sphere. I hope others may find it helpful/interesting. [...]

Using Foursquare and Crowdmap to track local elections

With the midterm elections coming tomorrow, lots of news outlets will likely be launching their fanciest new toys and social media ideas to best pull in that coveted election night audience on the web. TBD’s no exception, though our election day experiments are based in off-site crowdsourcing to better inform our on-site coverage.

As we did with the Washington D.C. primary elections, we’re launching a Crowdmap to track voting problems across the District, Northern Virginia and parts of Maryland. We’re asking readers to report long lines, broken machines, ballot refusals, electioneering and such at the polls using email, Twitter hashtags or on-site reports. It worked pretty well in September, though this time I’m a bit worried about Crowdmap’s servers holding up. Right now as I post this, they’re struggling to load any of our maps.

I’m particularly excited to try out Foursquare in Tuesday’s election coverage. In our attempt to [...]

TBD experiments in community engagement: Week 1

TBD.com came out of the gates with a few community engagement experiments you might find helpful at your own news orgs. [...]