Posts filed under 'Twitter'

The top newspapers on Twitter? Try this list

Guest post by Mathilde Piard

In the past few days there’s been a blog post about the top 25 newspapers on Twitter that’s been making the rounds. In fact, it’s been circulated so far and wide that I’ve heard about it from multiple coworkers who don’t tend to run in different Twitter and/or reading sharing circles as I do, and who were wondering why two of our newspapers weren’t on the list (the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the Austin American-Statesman).

The problem with the post over at The Wrap is that it worked off a list from from the fall. Back then, the Journalistics post only looked at the top 25 newspapers in terms of circulation because it was part of a series comparing those exact 25 papers on Twitter, Facebook, website traffic, and Google PageRank. I commented on the recent blog post to point this out, as did Jeremy Porter, the author of the original list at But because Dylan Stableford hasn’t clarified in the post that his list is just for the top 25 newspapers by circulation (although he did update it to include at the bottom a few of the omissions, thank you) and since most people don’t read comments anyway, I figured it would be best to just provide my own list of the top 25 newspapers on Twitter, one that actually goes by number of followers on Twitter, not circulation.

Some will argue that ranking Twitter accounts by number of followers is a load of hogwash, either because Twitter’s recommended list skews things or because it’s not a good measure of “engagement”. The truth is, you could argue the same about any type of metric. Companies don’t share specific traffic numbers, so the only way to compare websites to each other is to use ComScore’s number of monthly unique visitors. Uniques don’t measure how long visitors stay on sites, how many page views they provide, how many comments they leave or pages they share with their friends.

Which leads me to my next thought: we shouldn’t have to resort to manually compiling lists like these of top accounts on Facebook and Twitter (by the way, Chris Snider does this every month for the top newspapers on Facebook). MuckRack has rankings of journalists by beat and region, but only tracks individual journalists, not brands. Jeremy Porter had a great idea when he compared newspaper circulation with other online metrics – but it would be great to see that kind of stuff for more than just the top 25 (mostly national) papers. And why look only at newspapers? I keep secretly hoping Cory Bergman at Lost Remote will compile a list of top TV accounts on Facebook and Twitter, since he’s one of the only ones to cover what local television stations are doing with social media – but again, he shouldn’t have to. (UPDATE: actually, he already did, ha!). Wouldn’t it be cool to compare TV ratings or radio cumes with online stats? And why keep it to media organizations? There are so many brands out there that fudge the line between media, and, well, everything else. Just like ComScore tracks unique visitors for websites, it should also track number of Twitter followers and Facebook fans.

Anyway, here’s my list, and here’s my methodology:

- I used the top of a list that Robert Quigley had compiled on this very blog in the wake of the original Journalistics list (which didn’t really state clearly that it was part of a series comparing how the top 25 newspapers tacked online in a variety of metrics, so it too drew a lot of criticism from people who didn’t get it at first, including myself. Apologies Jeremy!) However, I kept to just the top 25-ish, because frankly I don’t have time to be as thorough as Robert was and go through nearly 200 newspapers.

- I’ve kept the list to US newspapers – no online/iPad only publications and I also took The Onion off the list. Sorry guys, it’s just easier to compare apples to apples. All the more reason somebody like ComScore should be tracking this for everybody, not just newspapers, perhaps not even just news orgs.

- In the case of the San Francisco Chronicle and the Arizona Republic, I went with the Twitter accounts that Jeremy Porter/Journalistics and Dylan Stableford/The Wrap used rather than the ones Robert Quigley had on this blog – as in, @sfgate instead of @sfchron_alert and @azcentral instead of @arizonarepublic. That seemed only fair since Robert’s list used @bostonupdate instead of @bostonglobe and @coloneltribune instead of @chicagotribune. That explains why the Chronicle went from 51st to 18th place, and Arizona Republic from 158th to 25th.

- I also added the Minneapolis Star Tribune, which The Wrap and Journalistics lists did have, but Old Media New Tricks did not. Interesting to note, it looks like the username used to be @mn_news and was changed to @startribune without claiming the old username. So I just did, to avoid someone else perhaps ill intentioned grabbing it. Hey Minnesota Star Tribune folks, if you want @mn_news back, holler and I’ll gladly hand it over.

- Because I removed The Onion from the list, I’m only confident about the top 24 or so listed. Beyond those, I had a quick look around the various lists to find the lucky #25, and that’s how I realized the fudging up of the other accounts like the Chronicle, Republic etc, so I extended the list to beyond 25, as a means or righting a previous slight I suppose J. If I missed your newspaper, I apologize. I’ll happily share the Google doc with you so you can add it yourself, or if you feel like updating Robert Quigley’s list of 200 papers (thus further emphasizing my point that someone like ComScore should really be tracking this stuff instead)

- A word about growth rates since the October lists: The Chronicle, Star Tribune and Washington Post lead with 127%, 91% and 84% (followed by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution with 63% – shameless plug, they are one of Cox Media Group’s papers ;) – and a handful of others in the 40-50% range). Interestingly, there is one account that had a negative growth rate: The Chicago Tribune @coloneltribune account with -2%. Ouch. I wonder what the story is there.

Top newspapers by Twitter followers

See the Google doc.

Piard is the social media manager for Cox Media Group Digital

13 comments April 8th, 2011

Newspapers on Twitter, ranked by followers

Inspired by this interesting but flawed effort to measure U.S. newspaper Twitter followers, I scoured the Twittersphere to come up with an exhaustive list of Twitter followers for as many U.S. newspapers as I could. I ended up with 200, but I think I’m the only one exhausted. I’m sure there are many I left off the list. Feel free to chime in with the missing papers in the comments section. I say the other list is flawed because it only measures the Twitter followers for the top 25 print circulation papers. Circulation numbers don’t necessarily equal social media reach.

I only counted the top account for each paper (as painful as it was to leave out my own Austin360 Twitter account with its 15,500+ followers). I didn’t combine Twitter followers for all accounts at each paper – just the top account. There are too many to do it otherwise. All accounts were measured in a two-hour span on Thursday, Oct. 21, 2010.

Note that the top three papers (and, yes, I included The Onion) were listed for a time on Twitter’s Suggested User’s List, which drew hundreds of thousands of new Twitter users to their accounts. Sure, they would probably be top accounts anyway, but it’s worth noting that Twitter gave them a serious boost.

A special thanks to Erica Smith, who used to track Twitter accounts on her blog before it became unmanageable (believe me, I understand). Her old posts gave me a good starting point.

Note, I tried to keep these to mainstream daily newspapers. There are several alternative papers who have a lot of followers as well.

Robert Quigley

Anyway, here’s the list:

1. New York Times 2,695,196
2. The Onion 2,427,663
3. Chicago Tribune 845,275
4. Wall Street Journal 484,596
5. Washington Post 215,697
6. Los Angeles Times 85,931
7. USA Today 76,190
8. Denver Post 32,902
9. Miami Herald 28,038
10. Austin American-Statesman 26,770
11. Dallas Morning News 25,196
12. Seattle Times 22,975
13. Atlanta Journal-Constitution 21,378
14. Boston Globe 20,363
15. Chicago Sun-Times 19,305
16. Detroit Free-Press 19,212
17. New York Daily News 16,359
18. Washington Times 16,087
19. The Detroit News 14,764
20. Houston Chronicle 14,438
21. Orlando Sentinel 13,712
22. The Times-Picayune 13,425
23. Baltimore Sun 13,368
24. Indianapolis Star 11,686
25. Sacramento Bee 11,330
26. The Oregonian 10,628
27. Philadelphia Inquirer 10,140
28. South Florida Sun-Sentinel 9,702
29. Boston Herald 8,951
30. Des Moines Register 8,674
31. The Charlotte Observer 8,237
32. Cleveland Plain Dealer 7,953
33. MinnPost 7,771
34. Seattle Post-Intelligencer 7,684
35. The Birmingham News 7,122
36. Deseret News 7,118
37. 6,929
38. Palm Beach Post 6,847
39. The State 6,561
40. The Star-Ledger 6,407
41. Los Angeles Daily News 6,314
42. Honolulu Star Bulletin 6,182
43. St. Paul Pioneer Press 6,152
44. The San Diego Union-Tribune 6,142
45. San Antonio Express-News 5,869
46. The Oklahoman 5,839
47. Colorado Daily 5,808
48. The News & Observer 5,612
49. Salt Lake Tribune 5,455
50. Las Vegas Sun 5,403
51. San Francisco Chronicle 5,135
52. Cincinnati Enquirer 5,017
53. Daily Camera 5,001
54. Ann Arbor News 4,962
55. The Hartford Courant 4,916
56. Clarion-Ledger 4,773
57. Florida Today 4,685
58. Tulsa World 4,607
59. St. Louis Post-Dispatch 4,573
60. Knoxville News Sentinel 4,533
61. The Columbus Dispatch 4,428
62. Lawrence Journal World 4,327
63. Anchorage Daily News 4,243
64. Grand Rapids Press 4,241
65. Orange County Register 4,202
66. Star-Telegram 4,091
67. Idaho Statesman 4,000
68. Albany Times Union 3,857
69. Rochester Democrat and Chronicle 3,857
70. Sun Journal 4,741
71. The Fresno Bee 3,689
72. El Paso Times 3,676
73. East Valley Tribune 3,668
74. Tallahassee Democrat 3,649
75. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 3,642
76. Richmond Times-Dispatch 3,606
77. The Providence Journal 3,598
78. Farm and Dairy 3,559
79. The News Tribune 3,520
80. The Modesto Bee 3,301
81. Capital Times 3,270
82. Journal Sentinel 3,266
83. Colorado Springs Gazette 3,214
84. Asheville Citizen Times 3,166
85. Omaha World-Herald 3,084
86. The Buffalo News 3,037
87. Lexington Herald-Leader 2,999
88. Wichita Eagle 2,984
89. Daily Press 2,978
90. Kalamazoo Gazette 2,934
91. Press Herald 2,907
92. Florida Times-Union 2,873
94. Naples Daily News 2,842
95. Asbury Park Press 2,837
96. Santa Cruz Sentinel 2,825
97. Contra Costa Times 2,804
98. Spokesman Review 2,739
99. Columbia Daily Tribune 2,704
100. Roanoke Times 2,662
101. Dayton Daily News 2,661
102. The Times of Northwest Indiana 2,632
103. San Jose Mercury News 2,612
104. Tampa Tribune 2,557
105. Reno Gazette-Journal 2,552
106. Daily Herald 2,535
107. Ventura County Star 2,496
108. Kansas City Star 2,478
109. Newsday 2,449
110. St. Louis Beacon 2,431
111. Flint Journal 2,428
112. Marin Independent Journal 2,413
113. Beaumont Enterprise 2,390
114. Press-Register 2,386
115. State Journal-Register 2,355
116. News & Record 2,333
117. Patriot-News 2,320
118. Gotham Gazette 2,313
119. Reading Eagle 2,266
120. The Virginian-Pilot 2,248
121. The Times-Tribune 2,193
122. Star-News 2,191
123. Sun Herald 2,122
124. The Everett Herald 2,079
125. The News-Press 2,006
126. Herald-Tribune 1,995
127. Waco Tribune 1,981
128. Seacoast 1,893
129. Albuquerque Journal 1,867
130. Quad-City Times 1,859
131. Gainesville Sun 1,761
132. Savannah Morning News 1,761
133. Charleston Gazette 1,745
134. Grand Island Independent 1,723
135. The News Journal 1,706
136. Nashua Telegraph 1,701
137. York Daily Record 1,683
138. Trentonian 1,680
139. Arizona Daily Star 1,653
140. Belleville News-Democrat 1,610
141. San Luis Obispo Tribune 1,558
142. The Post-Standard 1,537
143. The Ledger 1,520
144. Anniston Star 1,510
145. The Burlington Free Press 1,508
146. Courier-Post 1,508
147. Lancaster News 1,381
148. Pocono Record 1,362
149. Sioux City Journal 1,351
150. Northwest Florida Daily News 1,342
151. Telegram & Gazette 1,306
152. Herald Journal 1,263
153. Wenatchee World 1,191
154. Journal & Courier 1,183
155. The Vindicator 1,146
156. Greeley Tribune 1,067
157. Patriot Ledger 1,062
158. Arizona Republic 1,061
159. The Press-Democrat 1,046
160. Santa Barbara Independent 1,035
161. The Daily Reflector 1,032
162. The Daytona Post 1,022
163. The Saginaw News 991
164. Kennebec Journal 980
165. Rutland Herald 940
166. Watauga Democrat 923
167. Log Cabin Democrat 838
168. Stamford Times 827
169. Eden Prairie News 793
170. East Oahu Sun 772
171. Star-Banner 761
172. Corvallis Gazette Times 741
173. Ledger-Enquirer 731
174. Wisconsin Rapids Daily Tribune 719
175. Alton Telegraph 712
176. Northern Virginia Daily 682
177. Morning Sentinel 666
178. Appeal-Democrat 632
179. The Hawk Eye 607
180. Beaver County Times 601
181. Durango Herald 596
182. Helena Independent Record 588
183. Great Falls Tribune 585
184. Merced Sun-Star 571
185. Suburban Life 538
186. Chaska Herald 510
187. Salisbury Post 480
188. Tribune Star 473
189. New York City News Service 411
190. Victoria Advocate 405
191. Star-Gazette 395
192. Broomfield Enterprise 290
193. Hannibal Courier 237
194. Boston NOW 202
195. Downers Grove Reporter 172
196. Glen Ellyn News and Wheaton Leader 161
197. Macon Telegraph 87

45 comments October 21st, 2010

New Tricks: Update Facebook on weekends, Twitter in morning

News organizations have been putting more money — and resources — into their Facebook and Twitter efforts. Engagement, like news, is a 24/7 job, but there are times when newsroom producers and community managers can get some serious bang for their buck.

In a recent blog post, Dan Zarrella published results from an ongoing analysis of Facebook data points. One interesting statistic stood out: Facebook users share anywhere from 20 to 50 percent more stories on weekends than they do during the week:

What does this mean? Your newsroom probably has weekend web producers. You either have a Sunday newspaper, newscast or web content. If your news organization has a Facebook page, post links to your stories on there over the weekend. It’s as simple as that.

Recently found another survey from the folks over at Retrevo. According to their survey of theirs (not sure how many people participated, so don’t ask! 1,000 people across the country took the study, which was conducted in early 2010; thanks to Jennifer over at Retrevo for the quick update), 42 percent of Twitter and Facebook users check or update their pages/feeds first thing in the morning:

First thing. Before turning on the television. Before going to their local news website. There are several things this should tell you:

  • Tweet early in the morning, and be sure to post a variety of content, including any traffic tips and weather updates. If you get these out the door early enough, there’s a good chance your posts can show up in people’s Facebook News Feeds.
  • Post reminders for your followers to check your Twitter and Facebook profile for early morning traffic tips and weather, as well as other news and information they need to know.

- Daniel B. Honigman


Do you update your news organization’s Twitter pages and Facebook fan pages on weekends? First thing in the morning? What — and when — do you post? Please leave your thoughts as comments below!

77 comments March 17th, 2010

New Tricks: Responding to readers – we’re here and we’re human

At its essence, social media should be, well, social. Thanks to the progression of the Internet, what people want (even expect) these days is to be able to have a conversation with just about anyone at anytime. Whether we like it or not, this is how a lot of people now communicate. We are in the communications business, so it makes sense that we’d embrace it.

Responding to people encourages good dialogue (and good commenters) and is likely to make people more loyal to our product. I often get notes, through Twitter, Facebook or e-mail, from people who express gratitude that I’m listening and responding to their concerns and comments. People seem to think we’re a giant, uncaring media corporation. They’re pleasantly surprised when they get a real human response.

What you should do:

  • Respond to your reader comments. You don’t have to respond to every comment, but posting a response or two in a thread of comments, even if to just thank someone, is good practice.  Here’s an example from a marketing blog of someone doing just that:

Be sure to represent yourself as the author of the story or blog post, and be sure to not be sensitive or defensive.

  • For those on Twitter: respond to tweets. When people direct a message at you, either privately or publicly, be sure to give a response of some type. If you ignore them, they’ll be less likely to care what you have to say in the future.
  • Respond to comments left on your news organization’s Facebook fan page. It’s one thing to have the official response, coming with the official Facebook page’s avatar. It’s a step further to see a familiar columnist’s Facebook page responding to the question, giving some more authority to the answer. Jump in to help.
  • Respond to e-mails. E-mail is old-school social media, and if you’re a staff member, your e-mail is likely out there for the public to find. If you get a question from a reader, taking a few minutes to respond can go a long ways.

All of this sounds like it could be a major time suck, but a quick response or a short reply will often mean a lot to the reader who reached out to you.

18 comments January 25th, 2010

How to launch a freelance writing career via Twitter (Case Study)

(NOTE: This is a guest post by Victoria Harres Akers)

Andrew Keys, a landscape designer and blogger, didn’t sign-up for Twitter with the intention of launching a writing career. In the spring of 2009 Andrew hesitantly created his @oakleafgreen Twitter account after a bit of coercion from a friend who told him it would be a great place for him to promote his landscape design firm.

So Andrew set out trying to find the value of Twitter for his business. What he found were people in his industry talking shop and learning from each other.

Intuitively, Andrew made smart connections. He followed people in his industry, including editors at gardening magazines. He stayed engaged, nurtured relationships as they developed and subsequently his investment of time resulted in an invitation to contribute to a national gardening magazine.

Three articles later and Andrew has added “freelance writer” to his resume.

I asked Andrew if he could offer some advice to other writers who would like to use Twitter to network and perhaps even pitch a story. He quickly recommended starting with research.

“Months before I created my Twitter account, I found a long list from a reputable blogger in my industry of her favorite Twitterers,” he says. “When I signed up, I went back to that list, followed everyone on it, joined the conversation and made some good connections.”

Even more connections followed from those initial relationships.

When I asked Andrew if there was one thing he’d done that really stands out as having helped him in his Twitter endeavors, he says, “I was real. That, to me is the crux of Twitter at its best.”

I agree.

“Don’t pigeonhole yourself,” he suggests. “All work and no play makes Andy a dull Twitterer! Keep in mind that Twitter is about being real, and it’s about entertainment…the more well-rounded you are in the discussion you generate, the larger a following you’re likely to gather.”

“In the end, I think that [earnest contribution to discussions] went a lot further in those editors’ minds than if I’d pitched them when we first met,” Andrew says. “And it went a lot further in my mind because I felt I actually came to know them and the rest of my community as people. That’s as valuable as any published article, if not more.”

Here are some final bits of wisdom Andrew shared:

  • Learn and obey the rules of Twittiquette {basically, be polite}
  • Post a photo of your actual face as your avatar
  • Nurture valuable relationships
  • Contribute intelligently to conversations
  • Self-promotion has a place on Twitter, but know when to stop
  • Be yourself and enjoy talking to people


If you’d like to contribute to Old Media, New Tricks, you can reach us through @mediatricks on Twitter.

64 comments December 22nd, 2009

The 3 E’s of Twitter

For you Twitter pros, this will be a bit of a reminder of what you should be doing. Twitter newbies, pay attention.

It’s easy to fall into the trap of posting one link after the next, spewing out an endless stream of information. Information’s great, but there should be a lot more to your tweets.

Without further ado, I bring you this: The Three E’s of Twitter

1. Engage

On Old Media, New Tricks, we talk a lot about how to use Twitter. There are lots of ways to gain more Twitter followers, or ways to build your personal brand through Twitter, or steps on how to livetweet an event, but the easiest way to make your Twitter efforts successful is this: engage.

Simply put, one builds social media credibility — and value — through engagement, and Twitter enables one-to-one, one-to-many or many-to-many discussions.

Smart Twitter use happens through engagement.

2. Educate

As a journalist, your role is to help provide readers with information and insight to help them answer some big questions: Who should I vote for? Which product should I buy? What does this new law mean, and how will it affect my family?

Twitter audiences love this kind of information. They crave it. In fact, they pride themselves on the fact that they know about news before their friends — just because they’re on Twitter.

While you engage on folks on Twitter, be sure to provide relevant information that makes their lives better, and as you build out your audience, take note of which people like which information. Take it upon yourself educate your audience about your beat, your news organization and yourself.

But it’s not just enough to link to the news; convince your readers just why they should pay attention to you. Instead of tweeting “X law goes into effect today: LINK,” tweet “X law goes into effect today, and this is why it matters: LINK”. You’ll find that your links will get more clicks, your tweets will get re-tweeted and your time spent on Twitter will be more useful.

3. Entertain

Engaging and educating are two Twitter essentials, but if you’re not a fun person to follow, people just won’t follow you. Don’t just tweet serious or work-related posts all the time; if you’re at a ballgame, tweet photos from the game. If you’re at a restaurant, post a picture or two of your food.

Have fun with your tweets, so that other people will have fun following you on Twitter.

What other tips — ones that begin with the letter “E” — would you suggest to others? Please add them as comments on this post!

- Daniel B. Honigman

92 comments December 11th, 2009

Use Twitter lists to build your personal news brand

NOTE: I originally posted a version of this on the Personal Branding Blog.

For reporters on the social web, the strength of their personal brand can gain them readers or, more importantly, sources. Twitter lists are just one way you can introduce people to your work and get that one source you need to follow you on Twitter. (Of course, you can always pick up the phone and call them, but that’s besides the point.)

Here are some easy things you can do to brand yourself through your Twitter lists:

  • Thank every person who lists you. While it may take only a second to add someone to a Twitter list, it also takes a second to notice that you’re on someone else’s list. If someone thinks you — and your content — add enough value to warrant addition to their contacts, thank the person who adds you. If you’re not following the person who added you, give them a follow and then, once they follow you back, DM them a quick thank-you note. That note will get you noticed, and it’s yet another opportunity to talk to people in your network, as well as a new reader and a potential source.
  • Follow lists compiled by people you’re looking to interview. One way you can get noticed is by following someone else’s list. Many lists have no followers, and if you can distinguish yourself by being the first follower of someone else’s list, not only does it distinguish you, but it gives you and that person something to talk about.In addition, if you follow someone else’s list, it gives you a frame of reference in which you can formulate questions that will garner better responses.
  • Create lists of people you meet offline. Some folks have thousands upon thousands of Twitter followers, most of whom they’ve never met before. As you meet people at conferences, events and talk to sources, you may want to add them to a list devoted to people you’ve met.  An easier way to do this could be to create a new list for each conference and event you attend. This way, your Twitter contacts will be organized for quick recall. (Don’t forget that you can always add people to multiple lists!)
  • Create lists to show how well-rounded you are. Some folks live, breathe and evangelize social media all day, every day, and quite often, their Twitter streams are filled with all sorts of social media-related blog posts, re-tweets and general observations.While this is great, it will cause their stream to be one-dimensional and, therefore, useless to most people who actually use Twitter. For metro reporters, create list of useful people to follow in your city or town. If you’re a business reporter, create a list of local businesses on Twitter. If you’re a sports reporter, find the local athletes in your town on Twitter, and add them. For restaurant reporters, create a list of local chefs and restaurateurs on Twitter.If you’re looking to connect with your audience on a more personal level, create a separate list about your interests. Create lists around your musical and/or artistic tastes. Show your readers that you’re a well-rounded person, and they’ll be more likely to follow you on Twitter.
  • Showcase your sources. When a story gets published, create a Twitter list of the sources you used, so that the story does not just end there. Link to the list after the story on the article web page. If you can, print the URL for the Twitter list in the paper. Enable your readers to follow the story after it’s completed.
  • Showcase your happy clients. For successful freelancers, whether their business grows depends in part on positive word of mouth. If you connect potential leads with your happy customers, you’ll find that there’s a good chance your business will grow.At the end of your projects, don’t just ask for a LinkedIn recommendation. If you do consistent, good work for a local newspaper, add your supervising editor to a Twitter list devoted to your references. Twitter is just another channel through which you can connect your clients with potential customers.

These are just some ways to grow your personal news brand through your Twitter lists. If I left anything out, please feel free to leave your suggestions as comments after this post!

- Daniel B. Honigman

18 comments November 16th, 2009

New Tricks: Use Trendsmap to discover local Twitter trends

I recently found out about a new tool, Trendsmap, that tracks and visually organizes local Twitter trends.

Finally, a service for breaking news reporters to not only find what one’s local digital community is talking about in real time, but who’s talking about it.

For instance, once I moved over to my region, I found conversations about

You can even drill down further into more of the city’s trends, like so:

Trendsmap Chicago

Screenshot of Chicago Twitter trends (via Trendsmap)

Trendsmap is still in development, it seems. For now, the page defaults to a Los Angeles “home” region. (This can easily be worked around.) Also, not every region is included in the trends; only major metropolitan areas.

Regardless, I’ll be keeping an eye on Trendsmap, and reporters should as well. Through the tool, you’ll be able to find sources and build your readership with key influencers who drive the local news conversation.

Here’s a quick demo video from Trendsmap:

Daniel B. Honigman

15 comments September 25th, 2009

New Tricks: Use FriendFeed to keep up with your digital contacts

As newsrooms become more digital, it becomes more important for reporters, editors and producers to keep up with digital contacts and readers. The thing is, the social Web tends to be a very, well, “What have you done for me lately?” sort of place. In order to stay on top of things, you must monitor and respond to your contacts’:

  • blog posts
  • tweets
  • Facebook posts
  • other comments

This can become rather tiresome, especially if one looks at it as work — that’s a different blog post altogether — but it’s something that must be done nonetheless.

Last month, I blogged my thoughts on lifestreaming, and how it is to become the future of the web. I believe a feed-like (as opposed to blog-like) lifestreaming service, FriendFeed, may be the key to streamlining one’s digital activities.

You might not see an immediate benefit to using FriendFeed. In fact, you may think, “This looks just like Twitter. And FriendFeed just got bought by Facebook. Why would I use it?” Here are three reasons why you should use FriendFeed:

1. FriendFeed, when used properly, compiles all digital activity in one place. Forming a deep digital relationship with your contacts and readers take time, but if you read and respond to their blog posts, tweets, Facebook status updates, blog comments, Flickr photo posts and everything else, there’s a good chance your relationship will improve quickly. (Of course, you don’t respond to everything; focus on your influencers.)

FriendFeed compiles everything in an easily navigable stream, and it links directly to their posts. Just click through and respond, either on their FriendFeed page or — better yet — on the page itself.

2. Build your digital street cred. Many digital professionals are on Twitter. They’re not on FriendFeed yet; it still has that “geeky” early-adopter feel. If you’re on FriendFeed, and you use it to keep up with your contacts — not to mention make new ones — it makes you stand out.

3. Your good influencer/blogger contacts are there. There’s a good chance that any blogger worth their salt is on FriendFeed. If your contacts are in the space, you should be there too. Period.

FriendFeed, in my mind, is the new RSS reader. If you use an RSS reader (e.g. Google Reader) to keep up with your contacts, give FriendFeed a try. You can find me on FriendFeed here.


NOTE: I derived this post from one I wrote for the Weber Shandwick “Social Studies” blog.

3 comments August 14th, 2009

New Tricks: Does a re-tweet equal an endorsement?

I was just reading this post by Julie Posetti over at PBS’ Mediashift blog, and this section jumped out at me:

When I raised concerns this week about the practice of tweeters who openly identify as professional journalists re-tweeting without verification, in the context of the indiscriminate dissemination of tweets claiming to emanate from Iran, I found myself engaged in a lively discussion on Twitter. I asserted that when Patrick LaForge, an editor at the New York Times, re-tweeted (without acknowledgement of verification or absence thereof) a list of Iranian tweeters sourced from expert blogger Dave Winer (who had, in turn, passed on the list without verifying its contents) it amounted to an approval of that list, LaForge disagreed. NYU’s Jay Rosen then reminded me not to expect open systems like Twitter to behave in the same manner expected of editorial systems.

But while I agree with Rosen, my concern wasn’t directed at the unmediated Twittersphere. Rather it was directed at the way journalists approach this flood of information.

I learned this lesson firsthand from James Janega, one of my reporters when I was over at Tribune Interactive. Last year, when he was down in New Orleans covering Hurricane Gustav on James quickly defused a rumor that was swirling around about residents without identification not being allowed to evacuate the city. Since Gustav was the first large hurricane to strike New Orleans since Katrina, this had the potential to be an incendiary story.

Except it wasn’t true.

James did what any reporter would do: He picked up the phone. But we found out about the rumor through our social media contacts. (Here’s a great interview with James on JD Lasica’s blog,

So here’s a quick poll for you: Do you think a re-tweet equals an endorsement? Why? What’s your take?

Would love to post some answers! (Click here to take the survey.)

37 comments June 23rd, 2009

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