I usually cover social media generally — and Twitter specifically — as a reporting and audience-building tool the last day of my multimedia course. (Social media isn’t multimedia per se, but I worry that if I don’t cover it, it won’t come up at the j-school at all, though that’s changing.) This semester, I’ve moved it earlier, hoping I can provide more than a quick look before the class ends. Perhaps it will even become a tool to organize classes. We’ll see.
But one thing is certain: Twitter isn’t fun or interesting or useful unless you have interesting people to follow. I’ve tried to build a list of suggestions for my students that will be relevant, informative and interesting. These are all people I follow and enjoy. You might not; drop ’em and find new people.
Anyway, here are 10, in no particular order:
Steve Buttry, @stevebuttry, has had several titles at The (Cedar Rapids) Gazette, most recently 3C coach. He shares interesting journalism links and commentary.
Dr. Daily, @DrDaily, The Daily Iowan incarnate, at least on Twitter and Facebook. Driven by my former student Adam B. Sullivan, the DI‘s convergence editor.
John Dickerson, @jdickerson, writes for Slate and CBS News and shares interesting observations. He pimps his own work as @johndickerson.
Mindy McAdams, @macloo, teaches online journalism at the University of Florida.
Mark Luckie, @10000words, is the author of the blog 10,000 Words, which focuses on digital and multimedia journalism, and the forthcoming book The Digital Journalist’s Handbook.
Jay Rosen, @jayrosen_nyu, teaches journalism at New York University.
Ryan Sholin, @ryansholin, is the director of news innovation at the journalism start-up Publish 2 and created ReportingOn and the Wired Journalists.
Mr. Tweet, @MrTweet, is a tool that helps find other people you might find interesting by analyzing who you follow and who they follow. Another option is @LocalTweeps.
Kottke.org, @kottke, is run by Jason Kottke, who curates the Web and shares the most interesting links on Twitter and his Web site.
Dave Winer, @davewiner, is, to oversimplify, a software developer who has a real interesting in news. He was a pioneer of blogging, podcasting and in the development RSS. He’s building RSScloud, which he hopes will be an open Twitter-like system. Don’t worry, lots of this stuff is over my head, too.
Like I said, these are people who tweet about things I’m interesting. Of course, you’ll want to add people who tweet about things you’re interested in: sports, food, narrative journalism, politics, public relations, or teh (often inappropriate) funny.