WAN-IFRA

A publication of the World Editors Forum

Date

Sat - 01.11.2014


social media

Just over a year after The New York Times’ digital subscription model was launched, it provides the company with “incredible” audience data, the company’s chairman and CEO Arthur Sulzberger says at WAN-IFRA’s Digital Media Europe conference in London.

A total of 454,000 people have subscribed (not including print subscribers), and Sulzberger says much of the scepticism that abounded when the plan was first announced has since subsided. Given the number of media executives who have visited the paper’s offices over the last year, he expects many more payment models for digital content to be unveiled before long.

As well as the obvious financial benefit, Sulzberger noted that a key advantage of the subscription model is what it tells the paper about its audience’s reading habits.

Through the subscription model the Times has learnt that at the beginning of the day, many subscribers go to the Times in any format – print, tablet, phone or web – to scan the headlines. During the day, they look at the web or their smartphones, and in the evening they return to the print or tablet editions. The same subscribers tends to access the paper across multiple platforms, with different motivations, and the challenge now is to find better ways to deliver content most effectively across all devices, Sulzberger said.

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-04-16 17:52

Most people (hopefully!) understand the consequences of putting something online: once you upload a compromising photo or tweet something controversial, it’s available for everyone to see. But when news stories emerge and social networking is the only readily available source of data, how much should journalists publish from private Facebook or Twitter accounts? Are certain things off-limits, or is it truly anything goes? In a recent article, Poynter examines some general guidelines of reporters for publishing such content.

Poynter highlights the confusing nature of Facebook’s privacy settings as one of the main sources of journalistic dispute. Since there are numerous levels of privacy, from closed groups to more open fan pages, journalists disagree about which privacy levels are acceptable to draw from, the article said.

And, though Facebook posts between friends may be considered in the public domain, “informed consent” to publish the material might not necessarily be implied by the user, Poynter said.

“Journalists are stepping into gray territory with no widely agreed-upon standards,” Nisha Chittal of Poynter wrote.

Twitter, however, seems to be a decidedly public platform, the article said.

Author

Gianna Walton's picture

Gianna Walton

Date

2012-03-30 16:56

Media companies are increasingly encouraged to engage with their audience via social media. But this basic engagement can just be a first step. In an ideal world, the members of that audience will also interact with each other, continuing the debate started by the news organisation, deepening the impact of news stories, and building loyalty around the media brand to make sure it survives in the future.

This is all very well, but how do you do it? Well, it’s not always easy, argued the panel on community building at the Social Media World Forum in London yesterday. 

Nick Reynolds, the public accountability executive for BBC Online, advised caution when building a community from scratch. “Just because you have a marketing budget to spend, don’t think that’s going to result in a community,” he said. Instead, he urged professionals to think about whether they’re appealing to a genuine interest group. Mark Coatney, director at Tumblr also emphasised that, whatever you do in terms of community building, it is important to have clear goals and to understand the motivations of the group that you’re trying to reach. When adding a new feature, ask yourself, “Would I do this? Why would I do this?” he advised.

Author

Hannah Vinter's picture

Hannah Vinter

Date

2012-03-29 10:42

How has social media changed the news? It’s a question so big that it’s almost impossible to answer, but it’s one that a panel at the Social Media World Forum tried to get their teeth into today.

In a session titled “social media and the news” speakers picked out a few core areas in which social media has altered – and is continuing to alter – the way journalists work.

- Breaking news

Starting with the most obvious point, social media has revolutionised the way news can be broken and how fast it can be spread. Peter Bale, vice president and general manager of CNN, used the classic example of the way that reports of Osama Bin Laden’s death spread on Twitter to illustrate how quickly news can now move on social networks. Anthony Simon, senior digital campaigns manager for the UK Prime Minister's Office also pointed out that “it’s difficult to embargo stories for a long period of time” in the modern media world. Both sources and journalists have to adjust to this new reality of fast-moving news.

- The proliferation of sources

Author

Hannah Vinter's picture

Hannah Vinter

Date

2012-03-28 18:33

Google+ has come in for a lot of flack. It’s been called a “ghost town” by various news organisations and one viral image explaining social networks through the medium of donuts (of all things!) implied that while every other social platform serves a obvious purpose, the only people using Google+ were Google+ employees.

Speaking at the Social Media World Forum in London yesterday, Chris Brogan, president of Human Business Works and author of Google Plus for Business, makes the case that businesses – and by extension publishers – should be thinking about Google+.

For more on this story please see our sister publication www.sfnblog.com

Author

Hannah Vinter's picture

Hannah Vinter

Date

2012-03-28 10:11

From an underplayed incident to a viral, racially-charged tragedy, the Trayvon Martin shooting has shocked Americans across the country. How did the case attract so much attention, so quickly? In an article chronicling the coverage, Poynter called attention to how the combination of social media and tradition media outlets has defined the story, and its key players, so far.

News of Martin’s killing, which occurred the night of February 26 in Sanford, Florida, was initially limited to a short report in the Orlando Sentinel, which attributed the death to an “altercation,” Poynter reports.

It was not until Martin’s father, Tracy Martin, held a press conference a week later that the media began to question the initial reports, Poynter said. The Sentinel published a second article on March 8 with many more details of the killing and the shooter, George Zimmerman, who has not yet been charged for the death, Poynter said. Zimmerman alleges that he acted in self-defense.

Author

Gianna Walton's picture

Gianna Walton

Date

2012-03-26 17:58

A few days ago, the Mayor of London Boris Johnson switched the name of his official Twitter account @MayorofLondon to @Boris Johnson, just at the start of the formal election period and his re-election campaign. This provoked heated accusations that he had hijacked the official account by transferring the 253,144 followers tracking the activities of the London mayor's office to his re-election campaign, reported the Guardian.

In fact, when someone changes his or her Twitter handle (the @name associated with the account), all the other profile information – followers and following – remains the same.

The electoral debate aside, the Guardian took the opportunity to reflect on the nature of social media identities and the “ownership” of journalists’ Twitter accounts.

The case have some journalistic precedents for example the episode when Laura Kuenssberg, formerly the BBC’s chief political correspondent, moved to become ITV business editor, and transferred her 60,000 followers to her new account.

Author

Federica Cherubini's picture

Federica Cherubini

Date

2012-03-22 18:20

Many news organisations, particularly in the US, are investing time and resources in their social media strategies: both how to attract more readers, and how to engage with them more deeply. The latest Pew Research Center report on The State of the News Media in the United States found, however, that the role of social media in directing traffic to news sites was not as large as previously imagined. Nine per cent of Americans ‘very often’ follow news recommendations from Facebook or Twitter, either on computers or mobile devices.

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-03-19 16:48

A 30-minute video advocacy campaign exposing Ugandan warlord Joseph Kony got viral last week on the web reaching 17 million views on Vimeo and about 80 million views on YouTube.

The Kony 2012 video, realised by Invisible Children, generated a huge debate, amongst others, about how to conduct an advocacy campaign, how to cover complex issues trying to reach a wide audience or how to report on Uganda problems.

From a journalistic point of view, what was most interesting is how the video went viral so quickly thanks to the role of social media and online sharing.

An article on Forbes illustrated the 12 lessons we can learn from the video about how powerful social media can be in aiming for social changes.

The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project published a survey about the role social media played amongst young people, ages 18-29, in sharing the video. It was based on telephone interviews conducted 9-11 March 2012, among a national sample of 814 adults 18 years of age or older living in the continental United States, the report says.

Author

Federica Cherubini's picture

Federica Cherubini

Date

2012-03-16 18:52

Liz Heron, a key social media editor at The New York Times, is moving to the Wall Street Journal to take up the position of director of social media and engagement for the WSJ Digital Network.

 “In this pivotal role, Liz will lead a growing team that will be ever more focused on deepening the engagement we have with existing readers globally, as well as expanding our audiences, both on our own platforms as well as in social media,” said Raju Narisetti, WSJ’s managing editor for digital, in a memo reproduced on Capital New York.

Heron also announced her move on her Facebook page, where she has more than 380,000 subscribers. In a later update, in response to those who have asked if there will be a war between the two papers over her subscribers, she said that “The Times is too enlightened for that.” Nobody can “own” Facebook subscribers, she continued, adding that she hoped her fans will stick with her but that she has already suggested plenty of other NYT journalists to follow if they prefer.

Author

Emma Goodman's picture

Emma Goodman

Date

2012-03-16 17:53

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