Social Media

Facebook: 
I've been using Facebook ever since I was a freshman in college. For three years, I mainly used it for social purposes: keeping in touch with friends, relatives and meeting more people in my college network and residency.
However, the past year I have realized how essential Facebook is to the journalism industry.

Facebook is great for finding sources:

Not every one's phone number is in the phonebook, but almost everyone is listed on Facebook : Not everyone checks their emails, but almost everyone checks Facebook on an hourly basis.

Facebook has made my life so much easier when it comes to finding and tracking down sources--especially teenagers.

"With more than 400 million people searchable by name, occupation, network etc., Facebook is like a modern day phonebook--just with more photos and biographical details" - How Journalist are using Social Media

Facebook is
influential in generating the news: 

For example, one of the Beverly reporters at the Salem News wrote a short story about Beverly High School changing their mascot from a panther to a boat. This story was less than 12 inches but caught the attention of hundreds of angry teenagers--all on Facebook.

In less than an hour from when the story was published, there was already a Facebook group attacking the school for making the decision without the students' approval.

Journalism and Social Media never worked so well together.

The reporter simply went to the group, picked a handful of students to interview and had a follow-up story published the next day. What started as a 12 inch story turned into a front page story for the rest of February; only ending with the final report that Beverly High decided not to change the mascot.




Twitter: 
When it comes to Twitter, I am embarrassed to say that I was not 100% sure why I signed up for it. For weeks I have been using it mainly to let whatever "followers" I have know what stories I'm working on, when a new story gets published and when I write a new blog post--simple, yet satisfying.

However, the article, How Journalist are Using Social Media filled me in on others ways I can use the social media.

The first couple paragraphs already answered my questions and put into simple language why it is necessary for journalist to use Twitter:
"Tools such as Facebook and Twitter serve as excellent filters for the masses of information circulating on the web."

According to Brian Dresher, a manager of social media and digital partnership at USA Today, Twitter is an excellent source for journalist looking for leads and trends. This can simply be done by observing the hash tag (#) on the side of a Twitter page. The most talked about topic will be listed and updated by the minute.

After reading this, I realized how valuable Twitter can be. This is an excellent tool journalists should use if you ever find yourself searching for news stories. Stop asking, "what are people talking about?" and start asking "what are people tweeting about?"

With that simple explanation I have realized how valuable Twitter is and I am now 100% happy that I joined in the first place.

Follow me if you like what you read.



LinkedIn

Creating a LinkedIn account was my latest and last step towards connecting myself to the Social Media world.

I joined because even after spending countless of hours editing my Facebook account to be Pg-13, I still didn't feel comfortable connecting with co-workers and employers and on the social network.

LinkedIn gave me the professional outlet I wanted. It connected me to the real world I recently joined since graduating UNH.

Since joining, I've reached out to other journalists and newspapers I have worked with -- only enhancing my profile as a young, energetic journalist.

I've learned so much about the journalism industry at The Salem News and The Jewish Journal. And now my experience at Buyer Zone has connected me to the business world as well. This type of experience is something I'm eager to flaunt via LinkedIn and hope will help further my career.

Also, read my guest post on Joe Shartzer's social media blog:
If you aren’t on Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook, then you don’t exist

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