Why do we care about social media? Whether or not we like it, social media and the news are now completely intertwined and it can help and hurt us every day. To get started here are just a few examples of how social media has influenced or enhanced our coverage of a few noteworthy stories from the past year.
Back to the Standoff in Porter example…Rumors flew – turned out to be a man whose home was about to be searched by FBI agents died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.We deleted the rest of the comments because it was the wrong info – matter of public safety. We didn’t want anyone to read the wrong info and get upset.
Given the impact that social media can have on our coverage of news (both positive and negative) it’s obviously very important that we have a set of rules or guidelines to follow to ensure that these mediums forcommunicating with our viewers enhance not detract from our newscasts. Monthly calls:Best practices = things to learn from (project jump)Current Trends our viewers really like…Emerging platforms/uses of social media
In the meantime, WCSH6 has implemented an acting policy while the formal Gannett policy is finalized.Read from actual full policy
So that’s an overview of why we care and how our station provides guidelines for employee use of social media. With that in mind, let’s talk about how we as a station and as individuals use social media. Discuss all of the social media platforms currently in use by WCSH 6: facebook pages, twitter accounts, pinterest, google+ hangouts
Examples of around the clock coverage of breaking news and/or updates to stories from the newscasts.
Facebook allows for more interaction than twitter: viewers can see other viewers’ comments. WCSH can post surveys or request feedback.
On top of the station-wide social media accounts, a large majority of the on-air personalities at WCSH6 have their own facebook and twitter accounts which they use in different manners to keep their viewers up-to-date on stories they’re working on, interesting articles, and/or personal anecdotes. See above, live tweeting by Caroline during Feed Maine event. Pat: teasing a story coming up in his next newscast, providing link to completed package on the WCSH6 site, & sharing an article about a current event. Twitter is also a great medium for timely sports and weather updates (in under 140 characters!).
Keith provides an educational weather update while still incorporating his personality into the post (“frisky”). Lee being his goofy self, engaging his followers in a little fun humor.
Personal Use refers not only to how I personally use my professional social media accounts, but also to the fact that due to the public nature of our jobs, most of us actually keep separate personal pages. That is one unique aspect to the news business and points back to the third goal of our policy which is protecting the safety of employees. We want our viewers to be able to follow us on facebook to interact with us and see our updates to but at the same time we want to be able to use facebook in the manner for which it was created – to connect and share life moments with family and friends. Here are some recent posts from my professional facebook and twitter pages.
Social media continues to evolve. It seems like every week there’s a new platform out there which our viewers are talking about or using and we are constantly educating ourselves so that we can make sure we continue to grow with these communication outlets. At the end of the day our goal continues to be to provide news as soon as possible to the widest audience possible and more and more social media appears to be an efficient way of doing this.
On top of managing and updating all of these social media outlets and the website to keep providing our viewers with up-to-the-minute news, we still can’t forget our primary job…putting together several polished newscasts each day. Does anyone have any questions?
How the Media Uses Social Media
SMBME May 18, 2012
Social Media Impact on Local Headlines• Ayla Reynolds Case• Standoff in Porter• High Speed Chase• STORM CENTER
Each Gannett media outlet stresses importance of social media Within television, each station has a Social Media Coordinator WCSH6: Brett Whitmarsh (@BWhitmarsh) Meet monthly to discuss best practices, current trends, & emerging platforms/uses of social media Gannett currently finalizing a company wide policy
WCSH6 Acting Policy1. Maintain journalistic principles and ethics2. Everything is public!3. Do not publicly editorialize4. Re-tweets and “likes” are not endorsements5. Respect Copyrights6. Check links before sharing7. Guard personal information8. Accountability
Key Goals of our Social Media Policy Protect the integrity of the news Protect the station’s reputation Protect employee safety