Social Media Information in Newspapers

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Monitor of McAllen, Texas, is now printing the Twitter usernames of its reporters by their articles so that readers can follow them on Twitter.

At the end of each story in the paper, it lists how to get a hold of the reporter by facebook, phone, and e-mail.

According to an article on, the goal of adding social media information to the articles is to get more readers to follow, friend or like the reporters on Facebook and Twitter.

Executive Editor Steve Fagan says he is "encouraging reporters to show a little more personality through the social networks than they do normally in print or even online reporting, to make our people a little more human."

Fagan wants his reporters to engage their followers and friends on Twitter and Facebook and by adding some more personality on these sites, they have a better chance of being liked and therefore being read in the newspaper.

Reporters are also allowed to show more opinion on the social media sites than in an article. By being more personable they are more likely to connect with their readers.

"I've been 40 years in the business," Fagan said. "We (newspaper journalists) have gone out of our way to be invisible people, keeping ourselves out of it. When you're doing social media, it's not really possible to keep yourself out of it."


Ben Rodgers November 14, 2011 at 7:18 AM  

I feel like this is a great step for journalism and more papers should start doing this. This allows for the readers to get to know the journalist who's work they read. Along with that I feel like it will allow the readers to have conversations with the journalist about their work. That is one thing the internet and social media has done to really help the world of journalism. Readers are now able to have conversation and input in the news they read.

Mariah K. Young November 15, 2011 at 9:40 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mariah K. Young November 15, 2011 at 9:41 AM  

I agree with Ben. Personally I am a huge social media advocate, everyone should be active in it and this is a great way to do so. Also, I wonder if adding these Twitter names will help increase sales for the paper. Is it possible that if people feel a more personal connection with certain journalists, they will want to follow their printed work more closely?

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