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Archive for the ‘Social Media Reporting 2011’ Category

Flipbook: Managing Social Media

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Social media is a wonderful tool for information. It allows people to be connected like never before, but the volume of information can be overwhelming for many. Thankfully programs like Hootsuite and TweetDeck have been created to allow us to filter the information we receive, but they can be intimidating when users are confronted with massive walls of text as the programs sort out the information. News aggregation websites and programs can lead to similar circumstances, but iPad users can find some relief in the magazine-inspired Flipboard app.


The app presents information from the user’s social media networks in a graphical format that gives some relief from text heavy aggregators. Stories are divided up into various sub-sections that can be flipped through by swiping the screen to the next “page.” The app also supports several partnered news organizations, rss feeds, and pre-aggregated sections that users can load into their favorites section for easy viewing.


The app currently supports Facebook, Twitter, Google Reader, LinkedIn, Flickr, and Instagram, but only one profile from each can be loaded. This can be a drawback for anyone that has multiple accounts in Twitter or other multi-account services.


Overall the experience of reading social media through Flipbook is enjoyable. The space created by the visually-centered interface makes it easier to skim through the links and stories without becoming overloaded. The app’s support of a sharing feature through Twitter allows for quick retweets without having to use a different app. This can make it easy for users to share interesting stories that may not have been shared through Twitter originally. The app also allows for users to write original Tweets if they want to update without tweeting.


The app does not currently support Google+, which is a major drawback and can be a problem for anyone that has already moved over to that platform. The options available in the program are also limited. It supports Instapaper and Read It Later as read later options, but Evernote users will have to look elsewhere. The program also does not allow users to change how the data is sorted. The sections are sorted by popularity or chronologically with popular articles sprinkled into the timeline. While Flipboard puts red highlights stating the articles are “Popular on Flipboard” it would be nice to have the option to remove these from the stream of chronological information.


Overall, Flipboard is a slick and pleasant alternative to traditional news aggregators for iPad users, but it does lack some options that will hopefully be addressed in the future. It would be nice to see some Google+ and multi-account support in addition to more user options.


Written by Christopher Siler

2011/09/03 at 01:18

Keeping the Storify Timeline Organized

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Storify is a useful tool for every reporter that wants to use social media and the Internet as their main source.  Storify allows users to quickly assemble and organize Tweets, Facebook updates, and almost anything else they want by using Storify’s search engine or through add-ons in browsers like Chrome.  Unfortunately, the storyline section can become bloated with sources before you’ve actually started to write your story.  Here are some helpful tips to keep that storyline under control. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Christopher Siler

2011/08/09 at 18:32

Debt Crisis Curation

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The end of July marked one of the most contentious congressional battles since Congress passed the healthcare reform bill in 2009.  Tea Party and Republican members of Congress wanted deep cuts in spending without raising taxes while Democrats insisted on smaller cuts while boosting revenues by raising some taxes to offset the difference. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Christopher Siler

2011/08/08 at 22:05

Looking at Youtube

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Most social media discussions center around websites like Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare, but Youtube also counts within the sphere of social media.  There are many users that establish video blogs, known as vlogs, and Youtube has crafted services to allow communication to flow back and forth between users.  Users can comment on videos or create response videos that are directly tied to the original. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Christopher Siler

2011/08/03 at 00:43

Facial Recognition and Privacy in Social Media

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CSO posted an article about using facial recognition to tie anonymous Twitter profiles to real people by using Facebook and search engines. The article describes research by Carnegie Mellon University researchers that used facial recognition to tie anonymous Twitter accounts to Facebook users with search engines.  The professors say that this data can be obtained through public information without logging into Facebook itself.  This means that anyone with access to the proper programs could find you if you’re operating an anonymous account you don’t want made public. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Christopher Siler

2011/08/01 at 23:39

Twitter Places and its Uses

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I looked at Twitter Places this week to figure out how journalists could use it.  Unlike Gowalla and Foursquare, Twitter doesn’t check someone into a location, but ties their tweets to a specific location.  This means that Twitter’s check in service plays a much different role in the way it can be used in reporting. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Christopher Siler

2011/07/26 at 22:00

Metro’s Social Media Campaign

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DC’s Metro system isn’t the most popular.  It’s difficulties have become the subject of music videos and the system faces constant scrutiny under social media.  While Metro has sent out email updates and uses its NextBus technology to keep people informed of Metro status, people still complain that the system is slow and inaccurate.  Thankfully, the Washington Post reveals that Metro is launching an aggressive social media campaign to help address the challenges they face in social media. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Christopher Siler

2011/07/19 at 21:39