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Posts Tagged ‘#twutorial’

I’m presenting a workshop on social media this afternoon for the Alberta Weekly Newspapers Association, meeting in Calgary.

Links related to the workshop are my #twutorial series, especially the posts on breaking news, advanced search and livetweeting. We’ll also be talking about crowdsourcing and Facebook engagement, including the use of photos from your archives.

Here are slides for the presentation:

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I am leading a workshop this afternoon for the Daily Times in Farmington, N.M. I will use tips or techniques from many, perhaps all, of my #twutorial posts:

Step one for using Twitter as a reporter: Master advanced search

Use lists, TweetDeck, HootSuite, saved searches, alerts to organize Twitter’s chaos

Denver Post staffers’ #theatershooting coverage demonstrates Twitter breaking news techniques

Hashtags help journalists find relevant tweets and reach more people

Advice and examples on how and what journalists should tweet

9 ways to find helpful people and organizations to follow on Twitter

To build Twitter followers: Join the conversation, tweet often, be yourself

10 ways Twitter is valuable for journalists

Updated Twitter time management tips

Don’t be selfish on Twitter; tweeting useful information is good business

What’s the best way to view Twitter’s users? 16 percent or 30 million

Twitter data shows journos’ ‘burstiness’ boosts followers

#Twutorial guest post from Alexis Grant: A simple Twitter strategy that will dramatically grow your network

#Twutorial guest post from Deanna Utroske: Tips for twinterviewing

#Twutorial guest post by Menachem Wecker: How to use Twitter to find the best sources

#Twutorial guest post by Jaclyn Schiff: How using Storify can help you find great sources

Getting started on Twitter: #twutorial advice for a friend

Should a journalist livetweet a funeral? If so, how?

Use Twitter for conversation about an event, not just promotion

How to verify information from tweets: check it out

In addition, these two posts that predate the #twutorial series cover some of the points I’ll make in the workshop:

Suggestions for livetweeting

Updated and expanded Twitter tips for journalists

And I’ll use this Andy Carvin Storify acount as an example as well as this Denver plane crash.

Here are the slides for my workshop today (I may not use all the slides and probably won’t get to the case study that the last several slides cover):

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Journalists should treat information we gather on social media the same way we treat information gathered any other way, or an assurance from Mom that she loves you: Check it out.

My #twutorial series hasn’t been updated since late October, but I always planned to do a post on verifying information gathered in social media. Given the errors some journalists made in reporting on the Sandy Hook massacre and in the original reporting on Manti Te’o’s fake girlfriend, this feels like a good time to stress accuracy and verification.

The most simple and important advice I can give is that Twitter is like any other information source — documents, anonymous tips, news releases, press conferences, interviews, databases — it can provide valuable information or deliberate lies or innocent errors. Your job is to verify the information that looks useful. As with all the other information you gather, you can verify lots of different ways, and no single technique works for everything.

Some of the tips I provide here will be specific to Twitter or to social media generally. Some will be general verification tips applied to Twitter. And I’m sure I won’t cover all the ways you could verify information from tweets. As with all reporting, resourcefulness is essential. Develop some verification techniques of your own (and please remember to share them in the comments here). (more…)

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Twitter is a lousy promotional tool. If you use it to promote an event, you probably will be disappointed. But it’s a great place for conversation. Start a conversation about your event on Twitter, and you should get some promotional value.

A friend planning a journalism event recently asked my advice about promoting the event on Twitter, because he doesn’t use Twitter much. I responded first with some general advice about getting a new Twitter account rolling.

Here I’m going to address the specific question about promoting the event.

I’m not saying my friend shouldn’t send out some promotional tweets. You should and they will help. Twitter should be part of your promotional toolbox. Send out promotional messages on Twitter, just as you do on your website, Facebook, email, snail mail and any other communication means you use.

But even before Twitter came along, one of your best means of communication was word of mouth. And Twitter is the modern word of mouth (or thumb perhaps) for many of its users. While Twitter users may be a minority of your target audience for most organizations, they are a talkative minority, and every promoter wants to be part of the conversation among talkative slices of your target audience. And in a journalism group, the Twitter use will be high because it is such an important tool for journalists. (more…)

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A friend who hasn’t used Twitter much asked some pretty basic questions that I thought might make a couple of #twutorial posts.

This post will focus on getting started using Twitter. Tomorrow I’ll cover event promotion.

I appreciate when people candidly ask for help, so I have edited my friend’s email to protect his identity. He was referred to a couple of specific event, but I have edited the references to make them more generic.

I’m afraid I’m one of those who has trouble grasping the concept of Twitter so I wonder if you’d take some time out to deal with challenged folks, such as me.

I have a personal twitter account but have contributed very little to it except to promote a journalism conference. Haven’t a clue if it registered with many because my followers number the fingers on my right hand. And maybe a few on my left hand.

I do follow a few tweets but infrequently. A couple of baseball players, some about the news biz. But it’s not convenient. I have to be sitting at my desktop and go through the steps to see the activity on my account. By then, I’ve lost interest. So, how do I see tweets in relatively real time? I do not have a smartphone (is that it?).

Besides my desktop, I have an android-based tablet (Iconia Acer) based on wifi, an iPod Touch (wifi), and a simple cellphone which I’m not keen about loading up with dataplans to see twitterers. Ergo, I have to work pretty hard at reading tweets. Is that the way it is?

So, that’s the basic situation I’m in.

Now, I want to set up an account for another event. It is coming to the time when we must start promotion. I think I know how to set up an account but if you could give me a “101” on doing that, I’d appreciate it. Then, how do I let all those editors, reporters, publishers know about my tweets. Do they find me? Do I find them? If so, how?

We’re in the process of modernizing the website and it will be equipped for twitter feeds but I’d like to get a head start on it.

Excellent questions, all. I’ll start with the Twitter 101, then do a separate post on event promotion. (more…)

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Thanks to Jaclyn Schiff for this #twutorial guest post:

Jaclyn Schiff

A story breaks and you want to build a Twitter source list to help you track developments.

So what do you do?

Your next move probably includes using a combination of Twitter search, Topsy, Listorious, Twiangulate or similar tools. Looking at who your major sources are following and conversing with can also be helpful.

Here’s something else you should do: search Storify.

Most journalists think of Storify as a platform to use only after sources and content have been identified; a good place to go once you have the story and want to convey it. And yes, Storify is a great storytelling tool, but it’s a goldmine of sources too. All you have to do is search. (more…)

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Deanna Utroske

Thanks to Deanna Utroske for contributing this #twutorial guest post about the art of the Twinterview. Before we start with the guest post, I want to note that Ivan Lajara has Storified lots of Twitter tips for journalists shared in yesterday’s #dfmchat. I also thank Cynthia Parkhill for sharing two links relating to Twitter use: Summarizing takes practice and  Best crowdsource ever: Cat ears hat.

Twinterview v. To arrange or conduct an interview, the exchange of questions and answers, via Twitter

Twinterviewing, in broad terms, is any use of Twitter to initiate, facilitate or conduct an interview. (more…)

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I want to crowdsource some #twutorial posts:

Want to write a guest post?

Do you have a Twitter topic or technique you’d like to address in my #twutorial series? I’d welcome some guest posts.

I’m not interested in another general list of Twitter tips. What I would like is some detailed advice for journalists on a particular technique or issue relating to Twitter use. I would consider a second look at an issue I’ve already covered, such as hashtags or building followers, if you think I missed some tips. But mostly I’m interested in something I haven’t covered yet (you can see the links to other posts at the first link in this post). (more…)

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I led two workshops yesterday for Bay Area News Group journalists.

At the Contra Costa Times in Walnut Creek, Calif., I discussed ways for journalists who have started using Twitter to get better use of it. We discussed several topics I have addressed in recent #twutorial posts: search, hashtags, organizing the chaos, time management, building followers, how and what to tweet. (Time ran out before we talked about livetweeting in much depth, but that’s on the slides and I wanted to include the link since we did discuss it briefly.) Here are the slides I used:

(more…)

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Rather than writing an entirely new #twutorial post this week, I have updated my 2010 post on Twitter time management tips. I put my new version on top of the old version in the same URL to avoid duplication (and keep people from reading the old one because it would be higher in Google search results). So click the link above to read my new time management tips.

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Journalists often ask me how to build a following on Twitter. It’s really pretty simple:

  1. Tweet frequently.
  2. Have something interesting to say.
  3. Livetweet events and breaking news.
  4. Find and follow people who share your interests.
  5. Join the conversation.
  6. Give more than you ask for.
  7. Join tweetups and Twitter chats.
  8. Be yourself.

I was tempted to end this post right there, because this really is simple. But I’ll elaborate, with the acknowledgment that even with elaboration it’s all simple.

Let’s start by addressing the notion of “followers.” If you just think of the people reading your tweets as “followers,” that might be part of the problem. That feels and sounds like a one-way relationship (or two sets of one-way relationships, when combined with the people you follow. Twitter is most valuable as a conversation, so think of followers and the people you follow as your Twitter community or simply as your tweeps. And here’s how you grow your circle of tweeps: (more…)

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Hashtags help journalists find people tweeting about topics they are covering. They also help people who are interested in the topics you cover find your tweets.

My second #twutorial post on Twitter techniques explained how to use lists, saved searches and alerts to help you organize the chaos of Twitter. Hashtags also help organize Twitter.

We’ll start with the basics: A hashtag is the # symbol, followed immediately, with no space, by a word or phrase: #twutorial. In tweets, the hashtag becomes a hyperlink you can click to go to a search of recent tweets using the hashtag.

Journalists use hashtags in two primary ways: to find tweets and to help others find their tweets.

Non-journo tweeps use hashtags in at least four primary ways that are helpful to reporters: regular hashtags, event hashtags, breaking-news hashtags that catch on and humorous hashtags.

I’ll address these four types of hashtags in how they are helpful in both of the journalists’ uses: finding tweets and reaching people with your tweets: (more…)

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