When tragedy strikes social media can hurt or help

Quite often on this blog I have preached the benefits of social media. However, there are sometimes that it can actually hurt a news situation when it isn’t managed correctly. The hostage situation at the high school in  Marinette, Wis. this week is a prime example of the dangers of unmanaged social media. A student, with multiple weapons, took a classroom hostage and held them for about six hours Monday evening. Rumors shared on social media were reaching people long before actual facts were. These rumors included people being shot and that there was multiple casualties. Neither were true. In Continue reading

Americans are going mobile — where’s the media?

Last week the Pew Research Center released a study called Gadget Ownership, that shows 85 percent of Americans own a cell phone and 96 percent of 18 to 29 year olds own one. The study also looked at ownership of desktop and computers, video game consoles, MP3 players and e-book readers and tablet computers. The study’s findings show that cell phones are the most popular gadget among Americans. The most recent data available from comScore, which covered June through August, shows that about a quarter of the cell phones in the United States are smart phones. The comScore data also Continue reading

Kill the feed already

Congratulations (insert name of news organization here). You joined Twitter, but if you enabled Twitterfeed or RSS integration your success stops there. If you turned on these services you’re failing to utilize all that Twitter has to offer. Using Twitterfeed or RSS integration means you are using Twitter as a broadcast medium. It’s not. It’s so much more and you’re failing to use it to its fullest potential. First off, the tweets these services send out often leave something to be desired. They rarely leave room for traditional retweets. They usually just spit out a headline and the start of Continue reading