Wick Communications

Posts Tagged ‘Social media’

Social media fatigue

In Communication on 14 Jul 2016 at 4:24 pm


A curious thing happened to me in the wake of all that big national news last week. I got tired of it.

Now, normally, I’m a news junky. I have notifications set on my phone. I have spent a lifetime wanting to be the first who knows something so that I can tell someone else. News is baked into my DNA. If you are reading these words, I suspect you are the same way.

That used to be a sustainable lifestyle. The newspaper came out once a day. Maybe you watched the nightly news on television. There was a news cycle and you were free to do the laundry or feed your cat or watch “The Price is Right” until the cycle came around to the top again.

That’s changed, as you know. I learned of the two police shootings (in Louisiana and Minnesota) via social media before I saw anything from a professional news source. The Facebook livestream of Mr. Castile’s death was particularly surreal given the videographer’s otherworldly calm during the event.

I worked the iPhone heavily in the wake of Dallas. I checked the Dallas Morning News site, which was largely pushing its own tweets in the early stages. But I also looked at my feeds on Twitter and Facebook and Instagram to get the latest news. … Read the rest of this entry »


Broadcast your stories

In Online media on 5 Nov 2015 at 12:39 pm

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By now you know (because the helpful folks on the Wick Digital Team sent you an email last week) that BLOX allows you to “broadcast” your Web posts at the time that you update your site. This is great, and I hope it gets even better.

As you know, posting links and engaging chatter on Facebook and Twitter is time-consuming and often falls by the wayside when things get busy. It would be great if you could do that at the same time you are updating the Web, right?

Well, now you can through a newly enabled BLOX tool called Broadcast.

The digital team already described the process better than I ever could. In a nutshell, you find the Broadcast option under the “Other” tab toward the right of your asset. From there it’s pretty self-explanatory. Click Twitter and/or Facebook and write the verbiage you want to appear with your post. They will pick up the art that is already with the story.

We know both intuitively and through analytics that ever-more people are coming to our content through social media rather than by clicking on our homepage and opening stories. Friends share our Facebook posts. People from around the world see our Twitter feeds. It’s where our readers are these days. So we absolutely need to meet them there. It is no longer enough to update the Web and wait. You have to push this stuff through a variety of other channels that include Facebook and Twitter.

Broadcast can help. … Read the rest of this entry »

Is Twitter going long?

In Social media on 1 Oct 2015 at 12:29 pm

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The tech news site Re/code is reporting sort of breathlessly that Twitter is losing its 140-character limit in a move that will allow long-form content and change our relationship with the social media giant. (If you don’t already, you should know about Re/code. Great contributors and there is probably not a better way to keep up with Silicon Valley.)

I actually thought this was coming all along. It’s been talked about for years. Now the new interim CEO is charged with drumming up millions more users and some think that the pool of potential players is lessened by the limit. There is no official word on the change nor any indication of when it might occur.

Me, I like the limit. It causes me to think about how best to deliver the message. As it is, it’s differentiated from Facebook. If I can post at whatever length I like and attach photos and the like, I don’t understand the unique value proposition any longer.

Perhaps I’ll get it when I see it.

If you aren’t in the Twitterati, I strongly suggest you give the platform another look. It really is a great way to follow people on your beat, track real-time breaking news and just keep up with trends and things that interest you. I like it a lot more than Facebook, personally. (Follow me @wicknews!) … Read the rest of this entry »

The evolution of our industry

In journalism on 27 Aug 2015 at 4:49 pm
Palmer Ad Agency

Palmer Ad Agency

This column, headlined “Witnessing the evolution of the newspaper industry,” first appeared on the Newspaper Association of America’s website on Aug. 26. Caroline Little is president and CEO of the NAA. It is reprinted with permission.

Four years ago, most of us wouldn’t have predicted award-winning TV series would debut via online streaming on websites such as Netflix and Hulu and would never be aired on cable or network television. Just four years ago, it seemed unlikely that people would prefer online music streaming and radio apps over CDs and iPods, let alone be willing to pay for it. And four years ago, most of us wouldn’t have imagined we would get our news updates on our watches.

During my four years as the CEO of the Newspaper Association of America, I have watched nearly every media industry shift dramatically in response to the ever-changing technology and consumption habits of our audiences.

The same holds true for newspapers. This industry has been around far longer than radio, television or telecommunications, and some critics have questioned how we will continue to remain relevant in today’s digital world.

But today’s numbers speak for themselves: In the United States, the newspaper digital audience is skyrocketing, reaching 176 million unique visitors across all platforms in March (comScore, 2015). Circulation revenue is also rising, both in the United States and around the world. According to the 2015 World Press Trends Survey, global newspaper circulation revenue exceeded advertising revenue for the first time ever. … Read the rest of this entry »

Can you have an opinion?

In Online media on 26 Mar 2015 at 3:37 pm


The question of publishing reporters’ opinions came from @muckrack: “Some journalists of color have been harangued for tweeting personal reactions to #Ferguson while also covering it. Your take?”

First of all, Muck Rack is a sort of social experiment for journalists, bloggers and PR professionals. Among other things, it is a platform for marketing types to find journalists who cover their niche. One of the most interesting things about it, for me, is a regular Monday evening Twitter Q&A. (Follow @muckrack and the Monday hashtag is #muckedup.) The question above was one of those bandied around on Monday.

As you can see, the responses were varied. That wouldn’t have been the case 10 years ago, when an overwhelming number of journalists would have suggested their brethren keep their opinions to themselves. That was the prevailing wisdom, well, forever. Until recently.

That began to change with the advent of social media. In part, that is simply correcting a silly bit of pretension from our pompous past. We all have opinions. Our readers know it. Just admit it already. It also changed simply because Web 2.0 was just so ubiquitous. It was becoming difficult for reporters to pretend to be opinion-less.

I think there is a logical middle ground. … Read the rest of this entry »

Let’s get pinning!

In Social media on 12 Mar 2015 at 2:13 pm

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Danielle Burleson wears a lot of hats in Green Valley and Sahuarita. She sells advertising, she helps with marketing, she does some payroll and she is the social media expert as well. In other words, she is a model modern professional with a range of nuanced skills that evolve daily. She has a growth mindset.

This week Digital Sales Manager Jim Keyes was singing her praises for the way she had transformed her news organization’s Pinterest presence. The Sahaurita Sun had gone from a handful of Pinterest followers at the first of the year to more than 4,500 in just a couple months – all because Danielle used her insight and passion to develop an audience on that platform.

So what’s Pinterest and why should we care? Pinterest is a social media platform that allows users to bookmark visual images that appeal to them. Those images can be “pinned” to “boards” that are organized around specific interests – food, fashion, Arizona tourism, whatever. Users then follow boards that interest them, and pin stuff from those boards on their own boards, creating a viral effect.

It’s not a way to push links. That said, Danielle says to be sure to include your Web address in your pins so that readers know where to find you. That Web address is sure to bring more clicks to your website and that drives advertising and all that that brings. Using Pinterest is all about engagement and finding people where they are. Danielle says she thinks of Pinterest as a very intimate, family-friendly network. … Read the rest of this entry »

Hate-share this, suckas!

In Online media on 20 Nov 2014 at 4:46 pm

hate sharing pic

It is now possible to troll your own audience. What’s more, some editors are apparently doing it purposefully and the Columbia Journalism Review doesn’t like it. I guess I don’t either, even though I didn’t know it was happening.

This is going to require a bit of explanation.

If you are a denizen of Twitter or Facebook, you have no doubt noticed that certain stories get shared a lot. Sometimes it’s not that they are important or even something the sharer much cares about. It has to do with the headline.

At first, savvy online outfits sought to create what even more savvy observers called “the curiosity gap.” This is a headline that doesn’t tell you all you need to know. In fact, it is designed to make you curious about what follows rather than tell you what follows. Here’s an example from the geniuses at Upworthy. By ending with “I think we know where this is going,” editors are baiting you. … You mean you don’t know where they are going? Don’t you want to look?

Now comes “hate-sharing.” This is a type of Internet headline designed to make you mad – and thus more likely to share it on your social media feeds precisely to say how mad it makes you.

Genius, no?

Examples in the CJR story include, “Should single women be allowed to vote?” and “Brunch is for jerks.” … Read the rest of this entry »

A reminder about social media

In Online media on 6 Mar 2014 at 5:16 pm
Thought this was sort of funny, courtesy socialmediatoday.com

Thought this was sort of funny, courtesy socialmediatoday.com

Any of us can make a mistake while using social media. It’s easy to tap out something on your snarkphone, er, smartphone, and later wish you had tapped out earlier. It’s also easy to inadvertently include your name and relation to your workplace when commenting on some websites.

In fact, that happened to Wick Digital Media Sales Manager Jim Keyes recently and he was kind enough to allow me to use his experience as an object lesson for the rest of us. Here he is in his own words:

I recently commented on a story in the local paper and really didn’t pay attention to the fact that Facebook sign-in postings show your personal information for all to see – with your title at your current position. More and more sites use the sign-in as their only procedure and not as an option.

A reader took this title representation on the site as me representing my company, Wick Communications, and was not happy that “Wick” was not characterizing his community in the best light.

Here are my lessons learned:

  1. To no longer post with FB sign-ins – as there does not seem to be a way to delete that title representation on one’s postings. This was misunderstood as a media company offering their official position on a topic – which was in no way my intention.
  2. Today’s world is so small and compact that one would never imagine an anonymous story comment could somehow get back to one’s employer. Pay attention to details. … Read the rest of this entry »

When the site goes down

In Online media on 16 Aug 2013 at 7:55 am

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You might have noticed that our high-tech world is fragile. Not to get too technical here, but sometimes stuff just mysteriously stops working.

Within the last couple of weeks, the websites for some very large and important news outlets went dark, including those for the New York Times and PBS. Sometimes the cause is something sexy, such as January’s China-based cyberattack on the Times website; other times, it’s more mundane. The Times site went down on Wednesday during routine scheduled maintenance.

So what’s a (slightly) techno-phobic journalist to do in an instance like that? There has been quite a bit of chatter about that as a result of the recent outages. Here are some thoughts to consider.

Use existing social media: The Times turned to its Twitter and Facebook accounts on Wednesday, posting several in-depth stories. That makes perfect sense to me. You have an existing presence there and hundreds of your fans will see your stuff.

Report the problem: It’s always tempting to ignore bad internal news, but there is no harm in telling readers on your social networks that you are experiencing a glitch, working to repair it and will be publishing on social platforms in the meantime. Everyone can relate to a temporary technical glitch.

You can create a new blog/site: Media guru Dan Gilmour thinks the Times should have had a backup site, perhaps a simple WordPress site (like this one), ready to go in such a pinch. He’s reasoning is sound. The Times doesn’t control Facebook and so is at the whim of a third-party when it posts there. I guess that’s true, though it strikes me as a somewhat paranoid worldview. I suppose we can imagine a situation in which hackers run amok and hit even our back-ups, right? Myself, I wouldn’t worry too much about that. … Read the rest of this entry »

Can I use that photo?

In Photography on 23 May 2013 at 2:53 pm

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Editors and publishers in the Discovery group had another of their terrific quarterly talks on Thursday, this one focusing on submitted photos and when it is acceptable to pilfer photos from the Internet. These are increasingly important questions as our readers take ever-more photos that are ever-more easily altered and posted onto the Internet through a dizzying variety of platforms.

  • Can you take that Facebook photo for your police blotter?
  • Should you worry about the authenticity of the photo of a tornado that was submitted by an unknown reader?
  • Are things posted on Twitter any different than those on Pinterest?

Suffice to say, we found no easy answers to any of these questions.

I have resisted the concept of a written policy dealing with submitted and Internet photos because the potential scenarios are vast. I don’t think I can boil it down to one irreducible and digestible truth.

Instead, I think these are nuanced questions that require editorial judgment. In that way, we are in luck. We have been applying this kind of logic since Ben Franklin was publishing the Pennsylvania Gazette. Here are some guideposts:

Consider the source: Do you know who took the photo? Ever used her photos before? Has she given you permission to use this one? … Read the rest of this entry »