Anthony Moor

Exploring Media in Transformation | Transforming in Media Exploration

/ˌtrænsfərˈmeɪʃən/ n. 1: a process of change from one form to another.

Filtering by Category: Social Media

Maximizing your social networks for journalism

Belgian journalist Roland Legrand has some good tips on leveraging all those accounts you've probably set up on various social media platforms so you're not just wasting your time.  I recommend a clickthrough.

To get the full benefit of social networks, journalists have to be do more than just sign up; they have to be engaged and active within their networks. And that means they need to carefully think about what image they want to project of themselves, to a group of watchers that might include both personal friends and business colleagues.

Newspapers need to pay closer attention to online comments

In Newspapers need to pay closer attention to online comments Robert Niles admonishes reporters and editors to join the fray on the comment threads that develop from their articles online. Romanesko's summary:

"No one with authority stepped in to admonish the rude, correct those who posted wrong information, or to respond to those who had questions about the story," writes Robert Niles. "Reporters and editors need to stay engaged with a piece so long as people are commenting on it and linking to it. Otherwise, they are squandering their chance to use that amazing content as the foundation to build the communities that can sustain market success online."

Comments on comments on artcles

Jeff Jarvis chronicles the buzz over a recent report in On the Media about comments-on-articles. It's worth a looksee at Dear Bob, considering the fact that we're 'turning on' comments later this week.

You caused a lot of discussion in your OtM piece about comments — and that discussion itself — in the comments on WNYC’s blog, in the comments on mine, and in blogs elsewhere — is an object lesson in the value of the conversation online.

...leap into this conversation, draw on the generous sharing of knowledge and viewpoints of people in it, take lessons away, and share those.

It would take 20 people to carefully vet Chicago Trib posts

(From Romanesko:)

That's what the Tribune's Bill Adee tells Michael Miner, who writes about the ugly comments posted on about violinist Rachel Barton Pine. Classical music critic Marc Geelhoed says this was a "puerile, pathetic discussion. ...Essentially, I'm arguing against the websites used by publications serving as places where people can make any comment they wish and expect that no one will find out who said it."

Twitter has become the place to get breaking news first

Of thePBS Idea Lab post Twitter has become the place to get breaking news first, Romanesko says:

That's Chris O'Brien's observation. The first quake-related tweet on Tuesday came nine minutes before the AP pushed out its first story. Gawker's Sheila McClear isn't a Twitter fan, though; she calls it "perhaps the most idiotic form of communication of our time."

Twitter tips

J-Lab, The Institute for Interactive Journalism just sent out a notice about a niftylearning module they've created called, "Twitter tips." Why shouold you care?

Over the last several months Twitter has finally hit its stride as a leading tool for finding and sharing timely information from all sorts of places and sources. Its usefulness for breaking news is obvious. However, Twitter is equally useful for tracking ongoing stories and issues, getting fast answers or feedback, finding sources, building community, collaborating on coverage, and discovering emerging issues or trends.

Comments on articles

At The Dallas Morning News we're preparing to launch a tool that allows people to comment on articles. Many, many other news organizations have done this already, so we're late to the game.

On the plus side, that gives us some real world experience on which to base our expectations for what will happen when we let our users in to converse. Here's a great post on Poynter about the experiences of other newspaper companies discovered by Belo TV station WVEC news manager Pete McElveen.'s model is one we'll be mirroring:

We have a profanity filter that catches basic stuff, but besides that, we deal with issues after publication. Every comment has a "report abuse" link to allow readers to help us identify problems, and we have staff that helps deal with problematic subjects such as local crime, politics, etc. We also keep a close eye on all stories played off the home page.

The ethic of the link layer on news

Jarvis writes about links offsitein:The ethic of the link layer on news

" unto others’ good stuff as you would have them link unto your good stuff. This emerges from blogging etiquette but is exactly contrary to the old, competitive ways of news organizations: wasting now-precious resources matching competitors’ stories so you could say you’d done it yourself. That must change. This ethic of the link will become all the more important as news organizations pare down to their essence. I’ve said often that they will have to do what they do best and link to the rest."

He's also got a lot to say about the Ohio revolt over AP fees. In case you've missedit, they've decided to share stories without going through AP first -- because it's cheaper and quicker. Jeff likens this to Web links:

By running other papers’ stories, the newsrooms are participating in a print version of linking to original journalism. Importantly, these stories are not going through the AP mill, being rewritten under an AP style and brand (which its contract with papers allows because the AP is a cooperative). Instead, now the original stories are getting more attention across the state.

What's bigger: All the newspaper.coms or Digg?

Read Diggnation in New York from Jeff Jarvis -- a post about the Web TV show spawned by the recommendation site "Digg." He notes that 2000 people attended the conference. First point: That's more than twice the number of people who attend the Online News Association's annual conference -- the one that I work on with a bunch of well-paid mainstream media types.

OK... it's not exactly apples-to-apples, because the Digg conference is a consumer conference -- i.e. for people who love the site -- and ONA is for industry people -- i.e. people who work in online news. But still.

Next, he notes that Digg received 26 million unique users (visitors) per month. OK so receives about 2.6 million unique users per month. 1/10th the Digg number. Again, Digg is a national site and we're regional. But still.

One other thing: He mentions TWiT, one of my favorite iPod listens. It's a San Francisco based techie podcast by Leo LaPorte, a former Tech TV guy who went indie when TechTV died.

Leo's done an amazing job of creating a one-man-band podcasting franchise.His podcast reaches, I think, 200,000 people a week-- something that's possible today because you don't need radio or TV spectrum or infrastructure like you used to.

Those Tech TVguys offered me a job back in the day, which I turned down for newspaper.coms. But... still.

What is it about this new media, Web 2.0 world that we aren't quite tapping into?

Well, it's about tech, of course. But... still.

YouTube Citizen News channel

YouTube has launched a "Citizen News" channel, to highlight some of the best news content on YouTube. Check it out: YouTube Citizen News channel

Once again, my perspective is that the amateurs aren't going to magically self-organize and document the world in a coherent manner like the pros, but I do expect they'll provide useful snippets of information that we can weave together in a pro-am way, similar to what we're doing with our beat blog on the Dallas school district.

Each individual citizen submission may just be a piece of a story, similar to a single statement from a conversation. Synthesized and reported out by a journalist, they're as invaluable as first-person quotes in a 'traditional' story.

Twitter as the canary in the news coal mine

Jeff Jarvis discusses my favorite obsession in Twitter as the canary in the news coalmine

Developers at the BBC and Reuters have picked up on the potential for this. They are working on applications to monitor Twitter, the Twitter search engine Summize, and other social-media services – Flickr, YouTube, Facebook – for news catchwords like “earthquake” and “evacuation”. They hope for two benefits: first, an early warning of news and second a way to find witness media – photos, videos, and accounts from the event. This is clearly more efficient than waiting for reporters and photographers to get to the scene after the news is over – though, of course, they will still go and do what journalists do: report, verify facts....

Twittering China's quake -- pure crowdsourcing?

On U.K's The Online Journalism Blog, by prof Paul Bradshaw details how Twitter has helped get the word out about the quake.

Here is crowdsourcing without the editorial management. How quickly otherwise would a journalist have thought of using Twitterlocal with a Google translation? And how soon before someone improves it so it only pulls tweets with the word ‘earthquake’, or more specific to the region affected? (It also emphasises the need for newspapers and broadcasters to have programmers on the team who could do this quickly)

(I don't even know what Twitterlocal is yet!)

More on Twitter as a reporting tool

Jennifer Woodard Maderazo has a good roundup of how Twitter has made her a better reporter, (but she also notes that it is a time suck to.) Here are some of her examples of how it's worked for news:

Twitter users in Southern California during the wildfires used the tool to do local reporting for the benefit of neighbors. Even for people who were evacuated and didn’t have a computer, they could follow the updates on their cell phones. Twitter users were also able to broadcast live updates on the Minnesota bridge collapse just minutes after it happened and before many news outlets could get the details out to the public.

The Iowa Caucuses were also covered by citizen journalists via Twitter, filling in the gaps left by local and national coverage. It also proved to be a good way to keep up with the results on Super Tuesday. We’ve also seen mainstream media embrace Twitter and other new media tools for reporting on important, time-sensitive stories.

More recently, Twitter was at least partially responsible for the release of a young journalist jailed in Egypt, who used his cell phone to send a one word cry for help: “Arrested.”

My obsession with Twitter continues

Michael Arrington discovers a new service that lets you Use TwitterFone For Easy Voice-To-Text On Twitter.

Seems like a funny idea at first blush, but then think of how this can make a reporter become a very fast reporter. He or she simply dials up a number, speaks, "Rick Carlisle has been hired to become the new Dallas Mavericks head coach" and the message goes out as a text alert. I think we should try this out when it's out of beta.

Publish2 to launch digg variation as journalist resource

Michael Arrington explains Scott Karp's startup here: Publish2 To Launch Digg Variation As Journalist Resource:

Like Digg, anyone can submit a link to a news story. But the only people who can vote on stories are pre-approved journalists.

I'd love to take some time to unpack the site, and they've invited us to participate, but truth be told I'm just too busy to give it a test run.  If you have, let me know what you think.  These kinds of sites are known as 'collaborative filtering' sites, where the power of the crowd ranks and orders content.  They will be key to how you consume news in the Web 3.0 era.

Online credibility survey

According to a new online credibility survey by the Reynolds Journalism Institute and APME the public and editors overwhelmingly agree thta local news content online is trustworthy.  But...

Disagreement was evident between editors and online local news users on whether anonymous postings should be allowed on news websites. The editors voiced a stronger desire than the public for readers to give their real identities in their posts.  

Yahoo Buzz: Yahoo reveals stats from the first two weeks

Everyone's buzzing about Yahoo Buzz, including Tech Crunch, the Bible of Silicon Valley, in this post: Yahoo Buzz: Yahoo Reveals Stats From The First Two Weeks.  In short: 

"’s clear that a link from blows away anything Digg or any other competitor can offer. That will keep the Buzz publishers, who must be invited into the service, paying attention."

We certainly are.  Yahoo linked to us 5 times in the past couple of weeks and absolutely blew away our traffic.  As more and more publishers vie for this kind of link, we can expect that we'll be chosen less and less frequently.

Mindy McAdams writes about a book that I've got to get called Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations.  In her post, titled An Audence is not a Community she quotes the book's author, Clay Shirkey:

A good deal of user-generated content isn’t actually “content” at all, at least not in the sense of material designed for an audience. Instead, a lot of it is just part of a conversation.

Mainstream media has often missed this, because they are used to thinking of any group of people as an audience.

The implications are profound:  It explains, of course, why user-contributed stuff that we think is meaningless and useless for an audience (such as boneheaded user comments or poor photos) isn't meaningless and useless if considered in the context of community.  It's our collective myopia as journalists used to providing "content" for an "audience" that's the problem.  We're viewing user-generated content in the wrong way.

Read the post.  And I gotta get the book.  On On the Media, I heard Clay talk about his book.  He again made a simple, yet profound statement that helps explain so much.  In the pre-Internet days, here's how we thought of organizing: 


  1. Gather people together
  2. Share information
  3. Act


Now, because of the power of the Internet to tag and organize the data (photos, blog posts, Web pages etc.) the order has changed:

  1. Share (as in uploading photos on Flickr)
  2. Gather (different people tag photos the same way, which means you can locate other people who've shared a similar experience)
  3. Act (do something together as a result)

Clay shows how this works -- click the link above to see the OTM transcript.