Sunday, November 20, 2011

In hyper-connected world, you have to be everywhere

Versión en español aquí.

At 3:34 a.m. on Feb. 27, something shook Leo Prieto awake. His apartment in Santiago, Chile, was in total darkness. 
Nothing worked except for his cellphone. He sent out a message on Twitter: "What the heck was that?" In no time at all, Twitter crackled with messages from all over Chile with stories of serious injuries and collapsed buildings.
Evidently there had been a massive earthquake, and Prieto began to share messages with other Twitter users via his cellphone. In less than half an hour, CNN in Atlanta recognized Prieto as an unofficial hub of information and sent him a tweet asking for his cellphone number.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Never sleep: best social network strategy

Versión en español aquí.

Not long ago the Wall Street Journal, which thrives inside its paywall fortress, recognized the importance of opening the gates a crack with its new Facebook application, WSJ Social.  

“You can’t rely on users coming to you anymore,” said Maya Baratz, head of new products for the Journal, in an interview with Nieman Lab. This change in attitude shows the increasing role of the audience in distributing and curating content for publishers. 

Friday, November 11, 2011

What makes a professional journalist? Ethics

With all types of people publishing news and information on the web, how do you distinguish who is a professional journalist?

After all, bloggers have broken some big stories before mainstream news organizations, for example. Many of them bring value to their work. In other words, how do journalists justify calling themselves professionals, and how do they differentiate themselves from amateurs and drivelers?

One important way is by their adherence to ethical standards of the profession. Another is by knowledge of how to investigate and verify information. Professionals with the highest standards should be dedicated to more than being first and generating page views.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

How to sell advertising without selling your soul

(Versión en español aquí.)

Fayerwayer is one of the most popular blogs in the Spanish speaking world because of its frank and conversational commentaries about the latest gadgets and software. 

Its founder, Leo Prieto, of Santiago, Chile, tells an instructive story about how the blog's first advertiser created controversy among his collaborators and the blog's loyal followers. (photo from

Prieto started Fayerwayer (a phonetic spelling of "firewire" in Spanish) in 2005 because he was dissatisfied with what he saw as a lazy, mindless rehash of press releases in most technology blogs and print publications. 

He decided he would actually try out the products and services and see if they were as described by the public relations and marketing specialists.