This post was originally published on Presto Vivace and is written by Alice Marshall.
May's NetSquared meeting was a behind the scenes look at WAMU's Metro Connecton. Producer Tara Boyle and host Rebecca Sheir explained how they and their team of freelance reporters put together they show. A theme is chosen and they work up a series of stories connected to that theme.
For sources they use the Public Insight Network, a database of individuals who are available to be sources. Anyone can list themselves. In the past they have used sources like Help A Reporter Out, but found it unwieldy. As a flack, I too have found it unwieldy.
They also spoke about their use of their website and social media. Their website has evolved and continues to do so. They now want it to be a news source as well as hosting a mix of audio, text, and videos. While most of their audience continues to be on the air, they are pleased with the growth of their online audience. They have a Facebook page and a Twitter feed. It seems that the Facebook page is more for audience engagement while Twitter is also used for research and identifying possible sources. Sheir described Twitter as more diverse because it is all public. She noted with some displeasure that Facebook wants you to pay just to reach out to your subscribers. I share her displeasure.