Election SOS First Aid Kit: Social Media
Many Americans will get their news from social media this election. Unfortunately, mis- and disinformation love social media. In this roundup, we highlight tips and resources to help social media editors cut through the noise.
Establish a plan
- First, read Joy Mayer’s article in Poynter for its comprehensive approach to social media.
- Next, create a list of questions you predict readers will have and draft some responses.
- Then, identify your newsroom’s area of expertise and stick to it. If you know local news well, cover local news. Now is not the time to switch lanes.
- After that, make sure you have a plan to monitor your comments section.
- Bear in mind that readers may comment on your piece in response to other pieces in their newsfeeds.
- Be prepared to respond to any misinformation with facts.
- Ensure that your staff this part of the newsroom appropriately.
- Finally, make sure you know how to use a sensitive language.
Gather your resources
- Various outlets put together guides for journalists covering the election. Here are some of our favorites:
- Brush up on how to tackle misinformation
- First, watch this webinar
- Then, consult these resources
- Finally, familiarize yourself with this tool to analyze Twitter accounts and spot bots!
Prep Your Audience
- The best thing you can do is set expectations early and reinforce reliable information often.
- Make sure you’re putting your audience first.
- Then, encourage readers to take control over their own social feeds. This Washington Post article helps readers understand how to navigate social media.
- Lastly, encourage readers to take breaks and consult primary sources rather than tweets!
- Connect with a trusted expert. They’ll be invaluable in countering misinformation!
- Join the Election SOS Switchboard to connect with other journalists.