Social Media–The Leader for News

Qualman: I really liked this chapter because it explained social media and why it can be valuable. The part of the chapter that reached out to me was when the author was talking about how all blogs are not bad. I liked the example of blogger Jane because it showed me how a national news story isn’t only a national story, it’s also a local story to the people that live in that area.

The blogger Jane story reminded me of the 35W bridge collapse that occurred in Minneapolis, MN in August of 2007.  It was a huge national story but to me, it was a local story because I live in Minneapolis and I have crossed that bridge a thousand times. I could relate to Jane and how she had a close connection to details about the senator because she worked at the courthouse and already new a lot about him. When the 35W bridge collapsed, I new two people that were on the bridge when it fell and one of them survived and one of them did not. I never posted anything about it on Facebook or anywhere on the Internet, but I did tell some of my friends and family and I’m sure they used my details (that weren’t in the news) of the victims and spread them by word of mouth.

Qualman is right when he said that word of mouth goes world of mouth because news travels faster than ever. I used to love reading the newspaper but that doesn’t happen anymore because by the time the newspaper is printed, it’s all old news to me. I get all of my news from Twitter, Facebook, and some news apps that I have on my iPhone.  It seems that everyone who uses social media is a journalist because everyone with social media, has an audience.

Spilka: I liked the history that Spilka provided about Technical Communication. I pretty much knew the history of Tech. Comm. because we always talked about it in my undergrad classes at UW-Stout. The thing that jumped out to me was when Spilka was referring to technical communicators and she said, “It’s time to adapt or move over” (p.2).  This is totally true.

I used to ignore technology and it really hurt me for a long time. Now that I’m a Technical Communicator, I have learned to embrace technology and use it to my advantage. I think my problem was that I didn’t understand a lot about technology and that scared me. Now that I’m familiar with it, I’m not afraid of technology at all. A little knowledge can go a long way.

The only thing I question about the Spilka reading is that not all companies are willing to adapt to technology. My company understands the need for technical communicators but they will not let us use current technologies so we can operate at a maximum level. It’s so frustrating knowing that I could be more efficient in my job if my company would just put some extra money back into itself and if they would try to learn about the benefits of technology. They are so old-school and afraid of change that they hurt themselves financially and internally because employees that brace technology can really see how much better the company would be if it would embrace technology too.

About natefellows

I don't know karate but I can scream really loud.

Posted on October 2, 2011, in Social Media. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. First of all, I’m really sorry to hear about your friend. When something like that happens and you’re very close to it, the “near miss” can be unbelievably earth-shaking.

    I can totally relate on technology. I am often leery of new things coming out. I still haven’t “taken” to Twitter. I am a late adopter, but not a Luddite. I am endlessly curious about social media and other forms of technology, but my understanding and interest level don’t typically go very deep. I find myself annoyed if things change for no apparent (to me) reason, but I bump along in my apple cart and eventually figure things out.

    I agree that corporate is often afraid of trying new things out. Risks of liability and lack of understanding can really put an organization at a disadvantage.

  2. I don’t watch much news on television. I don’t have the patience or desire to listen to the stories I am not interested in. I’ve never subscribed to a newspaper either (although I enjoyed reading it when I was a kid). I mainly find news on the internet on my computer and on my phone. Lately, I have been finding out about breaking news stories (like the death of Osama Bin Laden) on Facebook from friends. I agree with your point that everyone is a journalist, and somebody somewhere has a close connection to news and events.

  3. Placeblogging AKA citizen journalism during crises like the bridge collapse, or as my dissertation focused on, Hurricane Katrina, is of great value because the mainstream media often gets lost in the sound bytes of the story rather than accurate or authentic details.

    Shamless plug, I know, but here’s a link to the paper I presented in Oxford that speaks to this:

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