Friday, March 6, 2015

Hunting for a Tweet: An exercise on using twitter as a journalists

By Jose Olivar & Julie Ortega

Twitter is an important tool for any one who wants to be a journalist. 

One of the key things that a journalist must learn to do in order to be successful, is being the first person to report a breaking news.

One of the best ways to put news out to one's audience is through social media. However, there are a few things to remember while using Twitter as a professional.

1) There is a difference between a person using Twitter in a professional or personal level. One cannot just tweet out things using words like "LOL" or "OMG"; as well as using ":)" to relay information as a professional. You cannot expect to be taken seriously if you casually use these things. Much like writing an email to an employer or a co-worker, you must use the same type of etiquette while using Twitter as a professional.

2) Urgency is not an excuse to misspell words or have grammatical errors. As a journalist, your job is to tell stories using words, you will seem like an unreliable person if you can't even properly spell out words on Twitter.

3) As I have said, urgency is not an excuse specially when it comes to accuracy and getting the facts right. It is, after all, why people follow journalists on Twitter. You want people to trusts what you say and the only way to do this is by reporting facts right. The same can also be said with the little things like spelling people's name the right way, and getting their information properly.

On March 4, one of my journalism classes had our class get in groups of two for a scavenger hunt for Twitter. 

The key of the activity was to find the things that were on our lists and tweet about it, under a 2 hour time limit.

Along with the time limit that we were under, we were also required to follow some of the rules that I have just mentioned.

With my teammate Julie Ortega, we went on our way to try and find the things that were on the lists, and we posted our results on her Twitter, @julieOrtega_

Below are the highlight of our day, and the tweets that our group were able to put out during the scavenger hunt.

Student on the Street

Wildcat Pride (Fans)

Hungry are we?

First-year 'Cat

'Cat Clubs and Organizations

Grad 'Cat (73 days to graduation)

Flat 'Cat (Freestyle)

Professor on the Street

Smart 'Cat (Academic excellence)

'Cat Facts (Little known facts)

The exercise really tested our skills as journalists and it showed us what it was like trying to report on the field. 

My partner and I, have previous experience tweeting out play-by-plays during sporting events, but we have never been in the position to tweet out breaking news before. 

It was definitely very helpful but also challenging at times. It gave us an idea on what it will be like using Twitter once we become professionals in our field. 

Below are our 3 favorite tweets from other students in our class who participated in the scavenger hunt.

1)We thought this one was really funny and pretty at the same time. Chico State does indeed have a beautiful creek that runs through it. The use of "the trees declined to comment," on the tweet was pretty clever as well.

2) This second one was really informative and Rachel did a nice job of using the panoramic view on her camera, as well as the angle of the shot she used. We also didn't know the information she gave about the WREC--which was also really cool.

3)On this third one, we thought that Jenice did a nice job using her camera, it is a really clever angle and the way she played around with this photo really made it interesting.

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