A few weeks ago in my reporting class we covered the ever delightful topic of Social Media. It was perhaps one of the chapters that I usually know a ton about. While I did learn a lot about some of the techniques journalists should use on social media (we’ll be going over that in the next post). There was one topic that my teacher kind of stayed on: Twitter.
Here in my school’s bubble twitter isn’t that well used. It’s just now growing some but not so much. I got my twitter account a year ago at the urging of some journalists friends who are out and about practicing the profession. In case you haven’t been able to extract this fact: I’m a wordy person. It’s something I’ve been working on of the late. My friends felt it would be a great way to condense what I had to say. I confess that I nearly cried on my first tweet. How was I supposed to say all I needed to say in 140 characters of less? I sort of gave up on it for a while, but then would occasionally pick it back up. These days however I mostly post something daily or every other day. I’ve to- date tweeted 2, 044 times. It’s been a pretty grand experience. I remember first starting and I was quite frightened to be “tweeting” strangers. We were talking about PR stuff, but it still felt strange to me. I’d heard too many horror stories of social networking to feel safe. After a while though it became pretty cool. One day I asked a follower of mine a question and was answered by one New York’s top Fashion PR people. I then understood why twitter was so awesome.
Now I’m the kind of social networker that makes sure all my accounts legit. What I mean is I don’t post something that would get me in any kind of trouble. Lately we’ve been bearing witness to some companies who have slipped up when it comes to their twitter accounts. I’m a big fan of the “If you can’t show it to your mother, then don’t post it” train of thought. So when my professor asked if I had a twitter I of course said “Yes”.
After some explaining of the mechanics of twitter my professor asked me about what assignment I’d like to work on for the chapter. While I could have easily said “I’d like to write a blog post” and turned in some old post from my Tumblr blog. I decided to practice Live Tweeting.
Live tweeting is when you attend an event and tweet form it in real time. Many companies and organizations are adopting a live tweet platform for events such as conferences. It not only helps to fill in the need for some up to the minute PR coverage, but it can also fill in the downtime between sessions and workshops. It helps continue conversations that have transpired in those events and can help people who are not attending to see what all the fuss is about.
I decided to live tweet form my college’s Constitution Day. It was a little strange for me. I chose to sit in the back of the chapel and being the smart phone-less person that I am, used my laptop to tweet the event. I was shaky at first just trying to cover the basics. But when it comes to passionate people and politics things got good. For the next hour, I was not only able to work on my tweeting abilities but I was also able to word on writing leads, attributing quotes and finding sources for government programs that where talked about. I was also able to fact check what was said. Time flew by and I found myself having participated more by doing all that I had.
Feel free to follow me on twitter! @thesuperrare