Tag Archives: BuzzFeed

Emojis in social media posts: have they become a thing in journalism?

On Wednesday, KCRW, an L.A. public radio station, used emojis in a tweet that promoted its “Morning Becomes Eclectic” show.

That same day, BuzzFeed News used one in an Instagram post about the NFL’s “Deflategate” investigation.

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Emoji’s have seemingly become almost a standard in everyday communication, but it’s still fairly surprising to see them in news outlets’ social media posts even two years after USA Today, perhaps jokingly, tried their hand at it.

That tweet was later highlighted in this piece.

In it, journalism professionals dismissed emoji-use.

However, Gregory Norfleet, identified as editor of West Branch Times, shared advantages:

“I’ve never used emoji nor emoticons, but if it makes for a better headline or graphic — more reader-friendly — I would. Readers, voters, taxpayers, etc. — if it draws them in to read the story, they become MORE informed.”

Fast forward to 2015, it looks like journalism has not fully embraced them. Both Instagram and Twitter lets users (or me, at least) search for emojis, but seeing them in journalism social media posts remains unlikely despite how often they are used casually.

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Why BuzzFeed, once in talks to be on Snapchat Discover, is missing from the section

More than a week has passed since Snapchat unveiled its Discover section. But BuzzFeed, which was reportedly in talks with Snapchat to be featured on it, remains missing.

It now appears BuzzFeed’s absence stemmed from a disagreement on how the content would look.

The Wall Street Journal:

“At an internal meeting this week, BuzzFeed chief executive Jonah Peretti detailed to employees why: the two companies were at loggerheads creatively, people at the meeting said. At issue was the fact that Snapchat’s editorial team would be involved in BuzzFeed’s content, creating friction. The two companies had ‘creative differences,’ Mr. Peretti said at the meeting, a person familiar with the matter said.”

Despite Snapchat being “involved” in the content, Snapchat’s Jill Hazelbaker told The Wall Street Journal “publishers have complete editorial control over their channels.”

Here is The Wall Street Journal article with more on the failed negotiations between BuzzFeed and Snapchat.

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With Discover, Snapchat brings back professionally-crafted news

As announced last year it would, Snapchat now offers the Discover section of their application. In the section, users can see news outlets that have joined the feature and swipe through the news organizations’ video and written content for that day.

Techcrunch says the feature signals a step away from citizen journalism:

“This new Discover page puts media at the forefront of Snapchat’s product. Brands and publishers are delivering content to users as opposed to relying solely on content users create to power usage of the company.”

After I tried it out, it actually appears to represent a major step away from citizen journalism.

A menu of brands showing their content on Discover…

snapchat discover

A screenshot of a video news report I got after hitting CNN…

CNN on snapchat discover

A screenshot of a video highlight I got after hitting ESPN…

ESPN on snapchat discover

Here is a look at how other outlets, People Magazine and Yahoo News, apparently used the feature:

Discover acts as a cross between a news app and a video-streaming service, especially with the ESPN stream concluding its series of game highlights and analysis with its iconic Sportscenter theme song, usually heard on TV.

The focus on quality of content is unsurprising considering Snapchat reportedly brought on board former newspeople to work on the feature.

When rumors emerged last year about Snapchat’s Discover section, BuzzFeed was among the news outlets reportedly in talks to be featured. However, as of the second day of the section being up, BuzzFeed has not been shown and it remains unclear why.

[Update: BuzzFeed’s failure to be featured was due to a disagreement in how the blog’s content would look, per The Wall Street Journal]

Snapchat is not totally anti-citizen journalism. In June 2014, it announced the Our Story feature that lets users add their post to a series of posts from a certain event. From the looks of it, Our Story will stay in tact.

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Snapchat set to unvail news-friendly, ‘Discover’ section

While prominent news orgs have already harnessed Snapchat, the social media app with the sort-of vanishing posts, it looks like the private messenger will attract more publications.

Digiday reports Snapchat is poised to roll out a section, called Discover, for news and other types of content from publishers. News orgs with which Snapchat has begun talks include Vice, ESPN, BuzzFeed and National Geographic.

Digiday:

“The conversations illustrate just how grand Snapchat’s media distribution ambitions are. It’s natural for Snapchat to want to partner with Comedy Central and National Geographic since they specialize in creating compelling video and still imagery, the two kinds of messages Snapchat trades in. But Snapchat also wants to serve its users text and audio, which would make it an all-inclusive media consumption app.”

However, it is surprising that NatGeo would be interested in Discover. While Digiday is correct in that NatGeo’s captivating content lends itself to visual media, the image and video quality on Snapchat does not measure up to Instagram, where NatGeo shines.