How to microblog in high heels

A geek girl's guide to social media and online engagement

Posts Tagged ‘social media

How can online communities assist and enhance traditional journalism? Some notes

On Wednesday this week I’ll be taking part in a panel event run by City University’s Interactive journalism students (they go by the name of ‘interhacktives‘ online) about how community engagement can enrich journalism. 

Also on the panel will be Nick Petrie, my counterpart at the Times, Sarah Drinkwater who runs Google Local, and MSN International editor Tom (aka flashboy) Phillips who also runs Is Twitter Wrong?

The Q&A discussion hopes to answer the following questions:

  • How can online communities assist and enhance traditional journalism?
  • What does a community manager actually do?
  • Which are the most useful social media and online tools?

For my part I will be drawing on three particular examples – both recent and long term – which I think exemplify how engaging with online communities can enhance your journalism.  Read the rest of this entry »

Autumn update: #cmLDN changes and Community Clinics

After a rather long summer break, and with the lovey Elana Zak off to dazzle the world of social media in the States, the cmLDN steering group met this Autumn to discuss going forward with our regular meetup group.

One of the things which we found difficult in our first year was organisation – as busy communities people it wasn’t always easy to find time to arrange venues, speakers and plan meetups around a theme. So with our new steering group recruit Rich Moynihan, we took time to think about what we wanted from a meetup group for community managers in London.

This took me back to days organising the Cardiff bloggers meetups with Ed Walker – which usually attracted about 40 bloggers each month from Cardiff and beyond to chat, drink, share notes and experiences and enrich the blogging community online with face to face gatherings. Part of the reason this worked, I think, was because most of the ‘talks’ were from the bloggers themselves – sharing experiences on a topic in an informal and friendly way. There were many other reasons this group was popular but I think this was one of them.

CmLDN meetup. Photo: Marika Kochiashvili via Twitter

Much like the bloggers in Cardiff, community managers and editors in London tend to work pretty remotely and detached from others parts of the company – often dealing alone with various problems and issues which arise in their communities. So coming together to share ideas, problems and tactics is really important and will develop and increase the quality community management in London and beyond.

So the meetups are being reconfigured to be for community managers about community management – with informal meetings in homes and pubs and the focus on sharing experiences and ideas in an informal, off the record format. Some of the most interesting discussions we had at the meetups in the last year where when a number from the group started to pitch in and a debate began.

We’re moving our organising platform to Facebook (the group is here) and off meetup.com – so hopefully we can have more conversation, link sharing and interaction between meetups – we’ll announce dates and venues on the events page of this group. If you’re a community manager in London, or work with online communities in some way please do request to join the group and get involved! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by hrwaldram

October 22, 2012 at 5:45 pm

Lost in Denmark #3: #Dona conference and visiting dr.dk

dr.dk offices in Copenhagen, Denmark

Last year I visited the Danish School of Journalism in Arhus to join a conference on hyperlocal journalism.

I was lucky enough to this year join the Danish online news association (Dona) for their regular meetup and speak alongside Kurt Westh Nielsen on ‘engaging with users for news organisations’.

Kurt has been speaking to a number of news publishers across the globe from the New York Times and meeting Rob Malda from slashdot to Le Monde to get an idea of the best practise for engaging with users.

He said speaking to Jay Rosen was inspiring, who fully believes that the user knows more than you do, and argues that journalists still need to overcome the fear that their ideas will be stolen if they work in an open way.

From speaking to many subjects, Kurt came up with a list of future competences for journalists (please be aware these are based on my notes):

  1. Engage in a dialogue with users
  2. Don’t be lazy – try out new platforms
  3. Digital journalism rewards specialist knowledge
  4. Refer each other (colleagues) to new digital platforms
  5. Communications between users – interact
  6. Share and request ideas from users

Kurt had also put together an (in progress) diagram for how different social media networks are performing against each other based on a metric system he created for measuring social success (which scored networks for things like togetherness – a presence of other users) – you can see a hazy picture of the diagram here.

He also had devised this handy checklist for journalists on good and bad uses of social media – some of this may be basic, but it’s worth remembering:

YES:

  • Write new versions for separate channels
  • Cross reference your other personal identities
  • Experiment!
  • Use social media to learn
  • Refer to other colleagues and good sources

NO:

  • Multiple channel streams
  • Not one personal identity doing it/or a general identity
  • Bombard users with content spam
  • Appeal to people’s common sense, don’t implement social media rules

Meeting dr.dk and other news organisations

While visiting Copenhagen I also met up with Marie Bering from the third biggest national newspaper in Denmark, Jyllands-Posten (JP), and Katrine N. Jensen, news editor and Lars DamgaardNielsen, social media editor, from the online outlet for the Danish version of the BBC – dr.dk. 

Interestingly in Denmark – Facebook use far outweighs Twitter – with more than half of the Danish population (5.5m) using Facebook rather than just 70,000 on Twitter – although many believe Twitter will grow to be used as a mass social network in Denmark soon too.

I won’t go into the details of my conversations with Katrine, Marie and Lars as some of the information they shared is commercially sensitive, but the general impression from the trip – after speaking to journalists from the biggest national newspaper Politiken, as well as Peter From Jacobsen from the Danish School of Journalism’s research centre Update.dk, is that some Danish media are still struggling to convince managing editors of the value of engaging with users via comments and social media. They are experimenting with different business models including the freemium idea that a certain amount of news content is free before extra niche/feature content is paid for, with Facebook commenting systems and social sign in methods to validate users on their sites.

Royal and parliament buildings in Denmark

Some projects of interest from dr.dk include their following of election candidate’s activities on Facebook (not sure we could even do this in the UK!). Dr.dk also recently launched this great interactive for browing some of the latest data from parliament on Copenhagen and the country’s budget.

Finally here’s a huge thank you to Peter From Jacobsen for organising parts of the trip, Jon Lund from Dona, and Katrine from dr.dk for chatting to me about some of the things going on in Danish media at the moment. I will follow with sincere interest!

Pinterest: Why the new social network is gaining so much interest

Pinterest

'Me boards'

Forget Linsanity, based on how my social media streams and blog readers have been clogged with mentions of Pinterest in the last week, I’m beginning to go a bit pinsane.

I’ve been interested Tumblr’s cooler younger sibling for a while – I signed up back when the branding wasn’t as retro and watched tentatively until US tech blogs began the murmur last Autumn. By the new year , it was all the US social media crowd could talk about and UK users were growing – then more and more mainstream media articles began to appear. I was asked to write a piece on Pinterest for the Guardian on Friday – but on researching the article I received such a wealth of response from self-confessed ‘Pin-addicts’ that I thought it would be good to publish some of these in full here – as some of the comments are incredibly insightful and, well, pinteresting.

Here’s the piece in full – and Cardiff-based photographer Pippa Bennett, who I quoted, has written this blogpost outlining in full how she got on Pinterest, her favourite things about it and the best boards to follow. Here’s an extract:

Its potential for creative professionals is definitely one of the most exciting things about it. All my other sites and networks have to be divided into personal and professional but you dont need that with Pinterest. I just have one account and it benefits my profile as a photographer without having to be aggressive in my promotional approach.

As a photographer I have created boards of my images on there. I tag them as accurately as possible and make sure my website link is on each pin. That then means that they can come up in other people’s streams and searches. It gets my photography recognised and seen without me having to shove it down anyone’s throat. Pinterest is especially perfect for me as I am a wedding photographer and wedding blogging and planning makes up a huge proportion of Pinterest usage.

I can also interact with my potential clients in a totally novel way. If they like what they see of my photos or they see other things I’ve pinned, they can go look at my other boards and see what, beyond my own photographs, I enjoy. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by hrwaldram

February 27, 2012 at 8:45 pm

Privacy and the audience: Who are you talking to?

As 2010 draws to a close, a topic has been dominating my thoughts on social media for a while now – privacy.

As one who could safely be tick-boxed in the ‘digital native’ bracket – changing online privacy settings when setting up new accounts is simply second nature.

But Facebook’s constant chopping and changing of their unnecessarily complicated privacy settings have not only been frustrating – but have thrown up a key question – should online privacy be the burden of the user or the platform?

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by hrwaldram

December 23, 2010 at 11:50 am