13 reflections on journalism in 2009

With so many SEO-aware blogging journalists out there — and some other linkbaiting-aware bloggers — you’re sure to run into many “top 10″ lists for the year in journalism. I’m trying to compile them here. Please add your own links in the comments below. Here is a start:

Jon Slattery is posting a series of “Best Media of 2009″ picks by industry professionals on his blog. Here is the list so far:

Executive tweets during search for murder suspect

Shortly after four police officers were killed in Washington, David Boardman (@dlboardman), the executive editor of The Seattle Times started using Twitter.

His account was created 27 days prior to the shooting, and he had tweeted once. After the police slayings, Broadman posted two messages telling people to visit the site. Then, he started really using Twitter.

He provided live updates throughout the day as police tried to find suspect Maurice Clemmons.

  1. David Boardman
    dlboardman UW Police say suspect may be in the U District. Someone reportedly saw him get off a Metro bus there. #washooting #lakeshoot #leschi
  2. David Boardman
    dlboardman Heavy police activity, including K9 units, in and around Dr. José Rizal Park in Beacon Hill. #washooting
  3. David Boardman
    dlboardman Police now say the suspect is not in Rizal Park on Beacon Hill.
  4. David Boardman
    dlboardman Police search seems to have hit a lull. Little scanner chatter or visible activity in Leschi, Beacon Hill. #washooting
  5. David Boardman
    dlboardman Latest police search focus: Maynard Avenue South and South Dearborn, in International District. Lots of cops. #washooting
  6. David Boardman
    dlboardman Employees at RDA Building, 800 S. Maynard, told to stay in the building. One says he can see a bloody gauze on sidewalk. #washooting
  7. David Boardman
    dlboardman Another empty lead? Alex Hong at Spic ‘n Span Cleaners on Maynard Ave. says 4 police cars there now, were 10 a few minutes ago. #washooting
  8. David Boardman
    dlboardman Cops looking for green 1997 Mazda Millenia, WA license 208SSX, registered to Clemmons’ wife. #washooting
  9. David Boardman
    dlboardman State Patrol calls off search for ’97 Mazda Millenia. Reports say car recently had been sold by Clemmons’ wife. #washooting
  10. David Boardman
    dlboardman Police say Clemmons getting help from family, friends to evade capture. Couldn’t do alone b/c he has abdominal wound, they say. #washooting
  11. David Boardman
    dlboardman SWAT team has arrested relative believed to be helping Clemmons. #washooting
  12. David Boardman
    dlboardman Police conducting “tactical operations” at 4 sites, including Renton house. Search warrants for all. #washooting

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Sources of top journalism linkers revealed

NYU professor Jay Rosen has a Twitter list of the “top 15-20 people most likely to give good link about journalism and its struggles.”

The Twitter Times creates a “real-time personalized newspaper” based on links shared by people you follow on Twitter, and the people your followers follow. Links are ranked by recency and popularity. Here is Rosen’s Twitter Times:

Jay Rosen's Twitter Times

I’m going to go out on a limb here and assume that the people on Rosen’s linkers list use Twitter to discover some journalism articles and blog posts. Not all of the people on the list subscribe to The Twitter Times, but here are the “personalized newspapers” of the six seven who do:

Twitter lists are useless a week after news breaks

Shortly after a shooter took the lives of 13 American soldiers at Fort Hood last week, some news organizations used Twitter Lists to help report information as it surfaced. It caught the attention of both journalists and social media observers.

Let’s see if those lists still provide useful updates or at least some basic information about the news that broke seven days ago.

Here are five recent tweets from the list created by CNN.

Fort Hood list from @cnnbrk

And here is a the top of the list from Dallas Morning News.

Fort Hood Shootings list from @DallasCrimeThese are the results from The Today Show’s list.

Fort Hood list from @todayshow

The Huffington Post has a good page of Twitter coverage. From that page, this is their list of Fort Hood Locals.

Fort Hood Locals list from @huffingtonpost

I think the New York Times did the best job with this one. They simply deleted their now useless list altogether.

Fort Hood Shootings list from @nytimes

I am not saying that all Twitter lists become useless for news organizations, of course. There are many ways journalists can make use of Twitter lists.

But if lists eventually lose their usefulness for breaking news, are there other real-time solutions that can do a better job? Visit the Fort Hood pages from TopsyBlogRunnerMoopzKosmixTinkerOneRiot, DayMixTipTop and AllVoices and let me know what you think. Do those pages work better than Twitter lists, or do they too become irrelevant seven days after news breaks?