news:rewired #2: social media panel

Kate Day (@kate_day) moderated a panel discussion on how to incorporate social media into your news organisation and reporting

Jessica Reed (@commentisfree), CiF editorial asst

CiF posts 30-40 non-newspaper blogposts a day

Has 100,000 active members, 3m uniques a month, 11m page views a month

CiF uses Twitter (JR is in charge of @commentisfree)

  • Trafigura example of power of the crowd – 5,000 #trafigura in one morning
  • CiF has a main account and sub-accounts (religion, education…)
  • use Twitter for crowdsourcing – ask for referrals for commissions, commentary, good blog entries of the day, story contributions (eg worst Xmas presents)
  • libertycentral weekly column is based on tweeted questions
  • live coverage of events eg Hay panel discussion, followers tweeted questions to put to panel
  • BUT not always successful – G20 tweets as it happened, readers didn’t like it (could get story 5 mins later on main site) – MUST know your audience & hard to editorialise in 140 chars

Mark Rock (@markrock), CEO of audioboo

Audioboo is a phone app to enable journalists & normal people to record high quality sound, add metadata (automatically geotags) and upload to their site, from where it is available as MP3 download – enables anyone to produce high-quality work (citizen journalism)

Mariana Bettio (@nikita79), Times Online search content producer

Tasked with getting journalists to incorporate SEO into daily routines

  • good SEO is thinking like a reader
  • isolated headlines are tricky to understand meaning of story
  • start point is to aim for top of Google ranking – different way of thinking as a writer
  • keywording means putting all keywords in headline that make it clear what story is about, to help reader find things that are relevant for them – not just putting “Britney” in every headline
  • more than just chasing Google, particularly once paywall goes up

Robin Hamman (@cybersoc), Headshift (former BBC blog expert)

Setting up online communities without the costs involved in moderating

  • Shownar beta – programme listing with all the best social media comments added
  • C4’s Picture This – C4-branded layer on top of Flickr back end – branding intact, moderation at arm’s length, didn’t have to design own software
  • – beta had built-in discussion but too expensive to moderate so tacked on Twitter filter software
  • His St Albans blog – increased Google ranking by researching similar blogs, setting up connections, community, gives traffic back
  • When have Twitter feed on site, you have liability by republishing so choose wisely

Q&A session

  • CiF guidelines for Twitter? No but more professional, less personal as work account – pick stories readers will respond to, don’t be too chatty but make it personal – and know the users that specifically use that platform (CiF v Twitter v paper) – JR
  • Do your orgs have a Facebook strategy? Depends on Times section, no overall strategy as such disparate communities – MB; hard to have overall strategy and would be meaningless as audiences so fragmented online, but use FB for photo comp, quite diff community and get much bigger referrals from FB than Twitter – KD
  • Is page views the best way of measuring the success of a blog? Not necessarily good for measuring value, it’s more about relationships, deeply engaged and frequent users not just one-click wonders – length of time on the site – KD; quality of the conversation you have with users is hard to measure – JR

One thought on “news:rewired #2: social media panel

  1. Pingback: news:rewired conference, Jan 14 2010 « Librarian of tomorrow

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