"Why traditional media should be afraid of twitter" is a good article to read for several reasons – to see what twitter is doing to really attach itself to journalism and news, to see how users use twitter, and to see how you –the journalist – can use twitter.

And, of course after reading it, I’m left questing “is my job (mine only) in jeopardy?” An analyst with Reuters seems to think so.   

To answer my own question: no, my job is not in jeopardy. Twitter will continue to come up with its own ways to engage more with news consumers on a level that I can’t reach. Twitter is only helping my job by getting more people to understand the value of the tweet. One tweet can get people to read articles, click links, turn on the TV.

My job – all of our job – is to connect what we’re doing, our stories, with those on Twitter. Twitter the company can’t do that. That work is left to us.

Twitter is perhaps the best social tool for us journalists to use through our day. A few tips:   

  1. Be more involved in our tweets by tweeting full information, not just teases or links to what we’ve already done.   
  2. Add insight – which isn’t necessarily opinion – to the story you’re covering, like the facts that surprise you.    
  3. Tweet photos – we are visual people. Draw people into your story with the pictures you share.
  4. Ask what our followers want to know.
  5. Make good use of hashtags that we all use around individual stories. 
Twitter agrees with me about it being THE journalist tool. Read: Why Expanded Tweets Will be Great for Journalists from Mashable.
Its newest feature will be expanded tweets that preview the links. Unfortunately, this features is only available for select media partners. I hope this changes. And to interject my own observation, Twitter often adopts and adapts features that 3rd party apps have already made available. Expanded Tweets that preview links already exist in apps like Hootsuite and Seesmic.

What ideas do you have in using Twitter?