This Mashable article on the many, many amazing ways journalists can use social media for their reporting is so, so interesting:
Journalists are, by nature, crafty folk who are wonderfully adept at stalking — I mean, finding sources and relevant information for various and sundry stories. Well, the advent of social media has made the process of reporting all the more nuanced, and has served as a vital channel for everything from finding leads to contacting sources to sharing and furthering one’s brand.
Still, as the Internet continues to expand, it can be difficult to pick and choose which tools are right for you as a journalist — it can be daunting to litter one’s desktop with Twitter applications, social networks, location-based tools and blogs. At times, it’s tempting to throw one’s laptop into the sea and return to the days of notepads and typewriters.
Still, if one can manage to circumvent the information overload and pick and choose which tools are most effective for which purposes, social media can be an extremely effective.
Coming from a PR background (as a person who now works in New Media for a labor union), I was also intrigued by the info on communicating with workers via Facebook so there’s no email trail. Since our union runs ads on Facebook for certain campaigns and we hope it will become more of an organizing tool in the future, this is definitely something I’ll keep in mind in the future.
And in a related note…ALL organizations should be on HARO (HelpAReporterOut.com). When I used to do PR/Communications for the student medical organization AMSA, we’d pay for ProfNet, but this service is so much better…and it’s free!