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Twitter now mainstream reporting tool: journalist

Twitter Canada’s Steve Ladurantaye came to Algonquin to give a seminar on  using Twitter as journalists. A hashtag was made for the discussion.

Twitter Canada’s Steve Ladurantaye came to Algonquin to give a seminar on
using Twitter as journalists. A hashtag was made for the discussion.

Current journalism students and members of the Media Club of Ottawa and the Canadian Association of Journalism gathered to learn how to use Twitter as journalists from Twitter Canada’s Steve Ladurantaye on Feb. 27.
Ladurantaye is an alumni of the program and worked previously as the media reporter for the Globe and Mail. He is now the head of news and government partnerships at Twitter Canada.
“I didn’t want to leave but I didn’t have a reason not to do it (the job at Twitter),” said Ladurantaye about the new opportunity. “I didn’t want to regret it.”
He explained that the way news is being distributed is changing with the use of Twitter. It was at his media job at the Globe that he began to tweet information that wasn’t included within his stories, but was still a part of the story. He noticed that he would gain followers exponentially when he would do this.
“There was a thirst for the information that wasn’t being published,” Ladurantaye said.
The seminar revolved around the ways that journalists can get their tweets noticed by a larger audience. This includes gaining followers and increasing the number of retweets you get by including a photo with your tweet.
According to Ladurantaye, the number one way to gain followers is to live tweet breaking news. He recommended injecting your own personality into what you are tweeting and engaging with your audience.
“Be yourself online – if you’re funny, be funny,” he advised the classroom. “If you aren’t, be more serious. And know your audience.”
Tweeting during the presentation was encouraged, and the group even came up with their own hashtag – #jtweets – so they could see what everyone else was saying.
Ladurantaye attended Algonquin in the late 90s. He was the editor of the Algonquin Times and said that working on the paper was valuable experience.
“Running the newsroom here was a great experience,” he said. “I spent about 10 per cent of my time on classwork and 90 per cent on the paper.”
His advice for students – especially those in the journalism program – was simple.
“Do everything you can while you’re here,” said Ladurantaye. “No one will say no. You have access.”

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