Social media reporting in the regions

I tracked a tweet back from reading Rachel Nixon’s twitter account.

That’s when I noticed this tweet (twit?) and read on with a more than a little confusion.

lalondetcbc: I’m making connections via Friendfeed for my new gig at social-networking reporter, CBC Vancouver
lalondetcbc: is setting up my CBC Twitter to use as CBC Vancouver’s Social Networking Report
lalondetcbc: I’ve learned to use a flipphone and I’m not scared to use it

Social media reporter? What does the job entail? Does the CBC now have someone covering the local Twitter/Facebook/MySpace/blog scene in Vancouver? How long before each highly integrated CBC content-providing depot has its own social media?

Oh. I see. I’m in the regions. Hell, there are people on dial-up out here and even some who have never heard of the Internet, let alone social networking. I guess they must like talking to other people face to face. Luddites, all of ’em.

Maybe I should set up a Twitter/Facebook/MySpace account for my area. Pork farmers recently dumped pig shit at the feet of federal and provincial ag ministers in beautiful Niagara-on-the-Lake… their spokesperson told me they notified the CBC beforehand. They were told that news doesn’t happen outside of Toronto. Then there were those silly unemployed people picketing outside the federal human resources minister’s office. When informed of this – another in a series of summer offences by increasingly desperate people against a politician that has rarely been called by its local CBC radio show (it’s just the HR minister during a recession, after all) – the same local said: “We don’t have the budget for that story or interest in it. Thank you and keep listening. Coming up tomorrow is our expert from the Rotman School of Business on how to invest wisely during a recession.”

Oh, and if someone from Toronto is reading this… I’m glad that bored-sounding evening weathercaster for my region – the one who kept calling Delhi (“Del-high”), Ontario, “Deli,” as in the Indian city – has finally been promoted. He only repeated this ruined small town’s name incorrectly for months (and it’s in the Human Resources Minister’s riding, no less).

Likely a social-media reporter would have helped. I mean, why even step outside the office anymore and talk to people to find out information and dig for stories when it’s all available online?


  1. Anon
    Posted September 8, 2009 at 4:18 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Theresa LaLonde gave a 2 minute piece on CBC Vancovuer radio news about schools and teachers cautionary policies on accepting students as “friends” on Tues Sept 08.
    It was asked by the newsreader Cecilia Walter toLa find and give more stories to “go to and look for ‘Tell us your story'”
    And Lalonde has a blog

  2. LocalYokel
    Posted September 3, 2009 at 6:17 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I can accept some blog\twitter reading as part of an audience response, like a call-back or email, on specific stories that have been presented on the radio. But this sounds different. And it would take… what… five minutes a day to find decent but possibly anonymously written tweets to read to the listeners.

    Has CBC radio abandoned streeters? Simplest thing in the world to gather and it gets the Ceeber out of the office and out into the scary real world, where people are and where stories can be found just by talking to people.

    LaLonde produced for The Point? I must be in the minority, but I didn’t mind the show. But I like the replays of Quirks and Quarks and Tapestry much better than yet another talk-oriented program.

    Hey, someone earlier mentioned Veejays. Is Sook-Yin still doing DNTO? I admit to not listening to DNTO anymore.

  3. Anonymous
    Posted September 2, 2009 at 9:29 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Teamaker J. Frank Willis caught onto Theresa Lalonde last year when News was broken…. ( In the comments sections )

  4. Anon
    Posted September 2, 2009 at 9:22 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Theresa LaLonde read twitter and blog entries on Monday. Maybe that’s the day they’ll do that on the Morning show Early Edition. It might also be on the Afternoon show “On the coast” all of which are Vancouver oriented. Maybe she read twits-off-twitter for the same-time provincial driving shows.
    Maybe they will realize that it’s a bad thing and it is time to reconfigure the system.

    Next Monday is a stat holiday and nobody works, but the patch-cord engineers
    bring a programme from another region to fill in national mornings. So try the streaming on 14 September.

    Miss Lalonde used to be the producer of that “Freestyle”-like show, called “Pointless”

  5. LocalYokel
    Posted September 2, 2009 at 7:53 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Where’s the audio for her reports? I couldn’t find any archived morning casts.

    Are the reports her beat as a columnist? Or does she actually file daily reports on the Van social networking scene? She isn’t just reading stuff that’s been posted on the net… right?

    Are we picking on Nixon? Using Nixon’s public twitter shouldn’t be considered for criticism?

    If there’s money for a social media reporter in Vancouver then surely there’s money to get the regions some more bugetary attention.

    Personally, I think the Ceeb is doing a good job of using the net right now, as a fully integrated site. The privates are waay behind, judging by my surfing.

    But shouldn’t the net just re-broadcast what’s hopefully being gathered? I listen locally (we see the CBC trucks during tornados out here) but like to check out what’s going on in other places. That’s how I use the net.

  6. A-nony-nony
    Posted September 2, 2009 at 1:57 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Seeing as we see Nixon as the new demon, watch her read from stone tablets in a lightning storm at:

    25 August 2009, TORONTO hosting event to discuss the future of media
    If you’re not sick of the conversation about where journalism and the media are headed (and Masthead certainly hopes you’re not), you might be interested in an event being hosted by “citizen media news outlet” called “The Future of Media.” It’s taking place on Sept. 24 at Toronto’s Drake Hotel (1150 Queen Street West) and it’s free. Doors open at 7:30 p.m and seating is on a first-come, first-serve basis.

    The event will take the form of a panel discussion between Rachel Nixon, director of digital media at CBC News and former editor at NowPublic; Richard Mcilveen, producer of the local late-night CTV News and the tech trends segment Webmania; Keith McArthur, senior director of social media and digital communications for Rogers Communications; Tim Shore, founder of Toronto news site BlogTo; and Chris Hogg, CEO of citizen journalism news outlet

    The conversation will focus on “how the mainstream media are implementing user-generated content and what challenges news organizations face in the changing news economy today.”

    David Silverberg, managing editor for, who will moderate the discussion, says the website is hoping to gain exposure from the event, while offering journalists and other interested parties to chance to discuss an important topic without having to pay an entry fee. The event is being promoted through Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

  7. Anon
    Posted September 2, 2009 at 1:51 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    And CBC Media guru Rachel Nixon’s former company is sold off after she has gone a month or two.
    Doesn’t this sound like CBC bought too many MuchMusic DJs (Hello Denise, Jian, George) and is making the same rear view mirror mistake again (and again). buys citizen news site NowPublic
    Last Updated: Tuesday, September 1, 2009 | 6:39 PM ET Comments1Recommend3 By Peter Nowak, CBC News
    The hyperlocal news market also known as citizen journalism is heating up with another acquisition, this time of Vancouver-based NowPublic by Denver-based
    The two companies announced the deal on Tuesday., a company that provides hyperlocal news and information supplied by semi-amateur contributors in more than 100 U.S. cities, is taking over NowPublic in a deal that is being valued at $25 million US.
    NowPublic bills itself as a “next-generation Reuters” wire service that similarly produces hyperlocal news, or content that is centered on the website visitor’s geographic location, and operates in more than 160 countries and 6,000 cities.
    ….Both sites rely on contributions from every-day people who so far have received little monetary compensation. Contributors are usually not journalists, though they are vetted by the websites’ staff. Some contribute in hopes of attracting job offers from the media while others do it simply because they want attention.
    “One of the key motivations is to have a public voice,” says Megan Boler, a professor of media studies at the University of Toronto. “It’s not a financial motive. It’s a desire that we’re seeing across the digital media space to be seen and heard.”
    … [ more ]

  8. Anonymous
    Posted September 2, 2009 at 9:48 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Everything Nixon is touching is becoming toxic to both the providers and the consumers.

  9. Anon
    Posted September 1, 2009 at 3:00 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    And on Monday the onslaught of Theresa Twit Lalonde started on Vancouver CBC radio.

    Remember Ormiston reading the blog wall during elections on The National news-read-by-old-men? Same type of presentation on radio.

    Waste of time and effort. No one is reading twitter/blogs who is LISTENING to radio. Go back and make it net only like Rachel Nixon and Radio 3, both of whom derived from the fetid swamp of pseudo-Calif. ideas of CBC west coast.

    Twitter skews older, much older than their desired youth audience they use Tudors for.

    You can go to and find the streaming audio for local ‘casts and listen to the first days attempts. It’s a disaster, like reading texts from a high schools blackboards, but less informative. Should have been strangled in the crib.

  10. LocalYokel
    Posted September 1, 2009 at 6:34 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I took LaLonde’s tweets to mean that she’ll be reporting on social media. Using information sources is indeed part of the journalist’s dig for stories, and the idea that reporters have too much on their plates is a little disconcerting to those who work, you know, jobs.

    Perhaps my overall point was not adequately explained:
    – social media reporter hired in Vancouver.
    – protestors outside federal human resource minister’s office.
    – money availible for one, but not a hundred bucks to gather tape for the other.

    More clear now, I hope.

  11. Cathy
    Posted August 29, 2009 at 11:20 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Shouldn’t following social media just be a part of any reporter’s job?
    Understandably, reporters probably don’t have much time in the day to add another component…. but isn’t this what the newsroom is for?

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