When DePaul University student Brian Ernst asked if I would take part in a project for his Digital Cinema class, I agreed to help out since I had met him previously when he visited Fox Chicago. Wow. Brian and his classmates put together a pretty impressive mini-documentary. Thanks so much, guys!
Posts Tagged ‘journalism’
Graduates of the journalism school at the University of Missouri, Columbia, are known to be members of the Mizzou Mafia. They are everywhere in the news business and members include Russ Mitchell of CBS News, Elizabeth Vargas of ABC News and Jim Lehrer of PBS. Here in Chicago, there’s Ben Bradley of ABC7, Judy Wang of CLTV/WGN and my boss, Fox Chicago News Director Carol Fowler!
I graduated from the well-respected journalism school at the University of Oregon but I married into the Mizzou Mafia. Although my husband is no longer in the news business, he enjoys heading back to see friends and former classmates. Ahead of the big homecoming weekend (and the big loss to Texas in an ugly game), professor Jen Lee Reeves organizes a “Mizzou Mafia Real World Lunch” to allow journalism students to converse with those of us working in the real world of journalism. Jen and I are always in touch through social media so I got the pleasure of being a part of the mob lunch.
I was quite impressed by students live blogging and tweeting with a #realworld hashtag during the event. But, as they did, they heard about the grim situation in the real world. Some of the panelists had been laid off and they are looking for work. The rest are working harder than ever. I stressed the underlying need to truly love writing and journalism. Our business tools and avenues are changing but there will always be a need for effective storytellers and communicators.
My ongoing love for words has served me well during my career. Though when I got out of J-school, I never envisioned that it’d also lead me to my own blog and an addiction to Facebook Scrabble.
I am no expert at social media – that’s what I stressed to students at DePaul University yesterday. They are enrolled in the country’s first-ever college course on twitter. When their instructor invited me to speak to the class, I worried that anything I knew would hardly enlighten college kids who are already technically savvy. But they listened intently and seemed interested in how a working journalist is using a web tool that didn’t even exist five years ago.
I met Craig Kanalley through twitter, naturally. He says DePaul wasn’t too sure about a twitter class when he first proposed it. But he argues, “It’s great for students. Social media is important and makes them more marketable.” Indeed, students are learning to market themselves in order to network their way to internships and jobs.
I find twitter extremely useful for interacting with viewers and all kinds of people, even while I’m anchoring a newscast or out reporting in the field. I surf the site daily to track news, troll for story ideas or find people to interview about particular issues. It’s not uncommon to spot breaking news on twitter minutes earlier than any other source.
I wasn’t too surprised to receive quite a few tweets from the DePaul class as soon as I left! These future journalists are not only impressive, they’re clearly ahead of the social media curve.
The web world moves fast, though. We may all be using some other social media source within the next year. But I bet I’ll still keep my reporter’s notebook and a pen at the ready.
Today I’m networking with Sarah Evans. Not the singer Sara Evans – this Sarah is a rock star in the world of social media. She was at Fox Chicago earlier this month to talk to anchors, reporters and any interested employees on how broadcast journalists can better utilitize social media. I’m glad she was able to jump off the internet long enough for us to visit over lunch.
I met Sarah on the web long before her visit to the station. She somehow found me when I first joined twitter over a year ago. I think she was intrigued that a “traditional” broadcast journalist was on the scene. Sarah has nearly 30,000 twitter followers and is the founder of the site’s popular #journchat series – a weekly live chat between PR professionals, journalists and bloggers. She’s also a guest writer for Mashable and just launched her own PR and new media agency.
“What’s stopping people from using ustream?” Sarah asks. She predicts the internet and technology will soon change the world of traditional broadcast journalism even more. Like many other social media strategists, Sarah believes a tidal shift is happening. Journalists need to catch the wave, jump out or risk washing ashore. Hang ten, baby!