7 Social Media Tools for Journalists

Sree Sreenivasan is dean of student affairs at Columbia Graduate School of Journalism, a social networking whiz, and an all-around cool guy. He recently stopped by The Boston Globe to talk to reporters and editors about the joys of Twitter and how to tweet efficiently and effectively. He showed us some handy Twitter-related tools that journos can use to locate sources, find story ideas, and get more people to check out your work. Here’s a quick sampling:

1.) HootSuite – web-based service allows you to track tweets, manage several Twitter accounts at the same time, and schedule when your tweets will be posted (so you can tweet into the future)

2.) Twiangulate – Find out who the people you follow are following. Great way to discover new sources.

3.) FriendorFollow – Find out who’s following you back (and who isn’t)

4.) Twitcam – Live video streaming. Looking forward to trying this – sounds really cool.

5.) Twitpic – I use this service. Easy way to share photos and images.

6.) Search.twitter.com – Find trending topics.

7.) Monitter.com – Search tweets by location. Another site worth checking out is Trendsmap, which lets you view trending topics in any location, in real-time.

For more tools and tips, check out Sree’s Social Media Tipsheet and his Twitter Guide for Newbies & Skeptics.

…and YO – a word to the wise!  As you probably know, there are zillions of Twitter apps, tools and services floating around out there, and new ones are being created every day. Many of them require that you type in your Twitter username and password to use them. So be careful! Don’t hand over your Twitter housekeys without doing some due diligence first.  Before you type in your Twitter account information and password into any website, make sure it has a solid rep and has been reviewed by some reliable media experts (like Sree, or the good folks here on SPJ’s Digital Media Committee 🙂

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Emily “Spikey Em” Sweeney is a staff reporter at The Boston Globe. You can follow her on Twitter (@emilysweeney) and find her on LinkedIn, among other places.


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