This last Wednesday I participated in the #WJchat on Twitter. #WJchat is a way for journalists around the nation to communicate their thoughts on ideas on a different journalism topic each week. It is very hard to keep up with the chat because every second there are many tweets coming in. The topic on Wednesday, November 9th, 2011 was about open news and how to reach out to people in your community. Some of the questions asked on the chat were, how do you get your community to trust you without an established reputation and what kind of events do you get the best response for stories? These questions are important to me because usually I just write about sports, but as an aspiring sports journalists I need to find the stories that engage the community. Before #wjchat I didn’t have a clear definition for open news, but after many tweets I found out according to Meghann Farnsworth that open news,” is also a way for us to connect with our online audiences offline. Meeting face to face is important”.
It is pretty amazing to see a bunch of different journalists come together and share some tips they have for other journalists. I tried to tweet and re-tweet to some journalists, but I didn’t get any responses back. Each chat there are certain questions that are asked and journalists have about 10 minutes to respond to the question. The next question asked was, who is your audience? As a college student I would say that the University of Oregon is my audience currently, but now I know that anyone I talk to can be added to my audience. For instance, all the neighborhoods around me and people I talk to on Twitter are part of my audience.
I also enjoyed seeing many journalists like myself, asking questions and engaging in conversations with other people in the field of journalists. Also, sometimes people tweet different job openings, which is another way people can find jobs. I think that more young journalists should follow #wjchat because it is a great way to learn new things about journalism. I took a lot away from #wjchat because anyone can respond. For instance, Sarah Fidelibus commented on the topic of how do you reach out to people to get stories.
I took a lot out of this chat and will probably follow this chat a lot more to get some good tips and advice that can help me in my journalism classes now and in the future.