Monday, December 29, 2008

Common sense advice from Gina Chen

Gina Chen, a 20-year newspaper journalist and Family Life Editor at the Syracuse (NY) Post-Standard, just started blogging about media this month at (She also blogs, prolifically, at her Post-Standard blog, Family Life.) SaveTheMedia has had only nine posts, so far, but add this one to your RSS feed. Right now.

Gina is not rehashing what every other journoblogger is talking about; she's putting up good, clear, basic advice on how front-line journalists can use new media. Here are some examples, but click through and read her extensive posts, in each case:

"How Journalists can use twitter:" "To me twitter is a way to connect with sources and readers in your community and on your beat. It’s a bit like chatting it up with the secretaries at the courthouse where you cover courts. You ask how her day was, how her daughter’s wedding went, and you develop a relationship of sorts. Then when the mayor gets indicted, you might be the person she tips off." See also: "How journalists can get started on twitter." And two more Twitter posts after that.

"Why journalists should blog." Seems elementary to us blogsters, but 90 percent of journalists don't do it (I'm guessing). Gina: "It connects with readers in a way a story doesn’t. It allows readers to interact immediately with you, the journalist, and other people who have read the post. It’s a personal medium that allows the journalist to come across as a human being, which sometimes can be difficult in a more traditional news story. Blogs are easy to read and fun, so they are a great way to communicate with readers."

"Tips for journalists naming a new blog." This is the kind of thing you don't think much about. But Gina does.

"10 Tips for journalists who blog." This is a must-read. I wish I had written it.

And, today: "A journalist's guide to search engine optimization." 10 more eminently sensible tips.

I'm looking forward to a lot more good stuff from Gina Chen.

(And I swear that before writing this, I had not read her complimentary comment on my previous post.)

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