New social networks for journalists

Social networks can be useful to journalists to promote, explain and persuade the public.  There are various forms of new and old media that are continuously enhancing the way journalists gather and write information.  An older form of microblogging that journalists use is Twitter.  Twitter was founded in 2006, and is a great way for journalists to scale messages and measure where the information comes from and where it goes.

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Twitter is also beneficial because it offers tweet lists, which show a list of people in a certain geographic area.  This makes the content trustworthy.   Another great feature of twitter is that tweets can be geo tagged.  This shows the location of where the tweet came from.

Another interesting tool that is advantageous to journalists is Talkwheel.  Talkwheel is a tool that keeps conversation flowing with minimal time commitment.  It allows its readers to interact across social media, websites and video sharing sites.  It is a circular form of social media that mimics a dinner table by making it easy to participate and share comments unlike other forms of social media like Facebook where chronological order plays a factor.  Journalists find Talkwheel to be useful because it is easy to navigate and focus on the text  as opposed to the physical set up.  The conversation wheel app has a left panel with topics, which are extremely beneficial for a busy journalist who wants to visualize what people are responding to.  If someone does not have the time to answer a question that another person has posted, a third person is able to jump into the conversation and answer which can be great for a journalist who does not always have the time to wait for an answer while working on multiple stories and having to make deadlines.

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Another fascinating tool is SocialBro.  This is a great time saver and is a twitter analytic tool.  It is extremely simple which is probably a reason for its early success and likeability.  The main dashboard shows recent unfollowers, new followers and offers information that helps see why certain people do not follow you and vise versa.  It also allows us to see who is not really active on Twitter from the list of people that one follows.  SocialBro also offers a feature that gives you advice on the best time to tweet.  Knowing when most of your followers are online, journalists are able to track when they will get more retweets and replies.

A third compelling tool is called Storyful.  This is an IPhone app that allows one to get the most popular social media stories of the day when on the go.  Storyful editors assemble the largest news from credible sources for journalists to browse for story ideas or even to stay up to date with current events that are taking place.  The app also allows people to see what certain media users may be saying about trending topics.

Social media is transforming journalism.  One major reason is because ordinary people can get involved.  The Boston bombings is an example.  Bystanders and ordinary people such as marathon runners and spectators quickly became citizen journalists while taking videos and photos of the traumatic events.  Some of the most read headlines featured their shots because they were the first to witness what was occurring and were able to turn in their work sooner than professional journalists.  Thousands of people take photos and videos every day that can develop into a sourceable archive for the masses. 

For more information on types of social network for journalist, visit here.

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Social Networking

Social Networking is a vehicle that allows one to connect with others through written communication.  There are various types of social network sites.  The most common range from professional, chat and or inform, content based, collaborative, or a combination of all.  Social media sites have become  an integral part of every- day life.  Social media creates an online community that includes communication channels, interaction and content sharing. 

One of the biggest fears for using social networking is the potential compromise of one’s privacy.  The invasion of privacy can create large challenges for individuals and businesses because once private information is posted on the Internet; it will forever be there.  Policies are designed to measure appropriate behavior.  These policies are meant to ensure that there are rules for the type of information that can be shared.

Privacy is a major factor that most consumers forget to consider while using social networking.  Each individual network has their own rules and regulations regarding privacy and what they are able to store in their account.  An example of this is Instagram.  Instagram is an online mobile sharing application that allows people to share photos and videos.  Instagram has a policy that protects all photos.  However they were acquired by Facebook. They updated their privacy policy to inform users that Instagram has retained control over who actually sees the photos.  This give users the ability to opt-in or opt-out to Facebook.  Privacy policies are crucial to social media.  They can usually be found under a home page tab and must be listed on the site.  They must be read and usually pop up as you sign up for a particular social media handle.

One social media handle I use called “Snap Chat” is an instant photo or short video application that allows you to receive an image and only view it for up to 10 seconds.  Something I learned about the app this week is that once you send a photo or video to someone, Snap Chat is able to store anything that you send.  I am sure, it has stated something about that feature on the site but I was not aware of that policy because I was never concerned enough to look for it.  However, some users should be.  Without knowing this information, one could put themselves in an embarrassing situation further down the road when it comes to applying to jobs or trying to acquire more responsibility professionally.

When I was younger and Facebook had just been launched, people my age were not as well informed about the privacy issues they were facing.  Even today if you ask certain people, I am sure they would not realize that if you Google their name, their Facebook will be one of the first things that come up.  I know that when I was growing up, people were using these social networking sites to bully and write inappropriate statuses and opinions.  Even a couple of summers ago I knew a girl who was fired from a job because she Twitted something about a customer who she knew that had walked into the store where she was working.

As I previously stated, it is vital to think twice before posting anything on a social network.  You have to ask yourself if you would mind if employers, family and peers saw whatever it is that you are posting.  As long as you take precautions before posting and make sure to read each social media handles privacy policies, you can use networking in a positive and favorable way.