Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Using digital tools to mourn, support others

While Capital District residents have had some trying times lately as multiple tragedies struck the area, they've also shown us, and, in some cases, the nation, just how powerful they can be when they come together in support of each other.

Locals were first struck by the tragic news of a Dec. 1 highway crash which claimed the lives of area high school student athletes Deanna Rivers and Chris Stewart.

As area friends, classmates, and family members mourned, the community came together in a locally unprecedented, massive movement on social media asking professional athletes Tim Tebow and Missy Franklin to call surviving students Matt Hardy and Bailey Wind as they lay recovering in the hospital.

The effort when far beyond the Shenendehowa or Shaker school districts where the students were enrolled, their teammates, or even people who knew them directly. Accounts from across the area described just about everyone getting some kind of message on Twitter or through other means to retweet or pass along the message.

The hashtags #TebowCallMatt and #MissyCallBailey spread like wildfire on Twitter - so much so that the athletes actually responded, providing a small amount of joy to students who suffered a terrible loss and had only begun to start dealing with that fact.

The Record's own Laura Amato wrote her own post on the power of people in this situation and I'll refer to her for more on this amazing community outreach which stands as a great example of what these digital tools can be used for.

In a similar show of community support, residents of Mechanicville came together over the last week following the news that a local Marine serving in Afghanistan was killed in action.

We provided coverage of the return of Anthony Denier's body on The Record's Facebook page by posting photos from the receptions and motorcade transportation and instantly started getting feedback from community members wishing the family the best in these hard times, remembering Denier as they knew him and much more.

The album we posted was shared more than 40 times in the last 24 hours, and some photos went practically viral with more than 150 shares and 360 likes as they were spread by readers and community members - just another example of the great power of social media to connect people in need, whether for news and information, social interaction, or support in times of need.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Crowdsourcing advice for the next president

Another exciting Election Day has passed for the nation and we can once again begin to count the days until the next Super Bowl of the news industry begins.

Election coverage has evolved greatly in past years from times when results had to be called in for print to present day when we can have reporters live tweeting their coverage from the parties held by major political camps.

This year also brought change in our coverage with respect to how Digital First Media's Thunderdome project allowed us to bring a wide variety of national, presidential election coverage to our audience while being able to be more focused on our local races at each of our respective papers.

While you can see all of the great coverage the Thunderdome team has been working on lately on our politics page, a project that I thought worked particularly well on Election Day was one where they dispatched our DFM reporters across the country to ask voters one simple question - "What advice do you have for the next president?"

Reporters then took a photo of the voter and e-mailed their responses to the central Thunderdome team, which organized the posts and distributed them nation-wide.

It was really such a simple thing, but it provided a great nation-wide look at voter opinions as they exercised their constitutional rights at the polls.

Here's some of the best advice provided by voters as part of the project, as selected by Thunderdome staffers. I'll also post some of our local submissions from Troy below.

Local submissions:

"Just make the world a better place, that's the best you can do. Good luck, being President is a handful." Christina Walker (Troy,NY)

"Just make the world a better place, that's the best you can do. Good luck, being President is a handful." Christina Walker (Troy,NY)

"It's time to build up America and forget foreign trade. We are already deep in debt to China and they sell more here than we will ever sell there." John Petersen (Troy, NY)

"We need more money. People aren't making enough to keep up with the economy. We're working 2-3 jobs just to make ends meet."Eddie Zepf (Troy, NY)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Full guide on how to start podcasting

I've recently had the time to finish assembling a complete podcasting guide for anyone looking to try this at their own property.

As always, leave any questions or comments you might have and please download and subscribe to Midday Ramble! Podcasting Guide Sept. 2012

Friday, July 20, 2012

Live blog from Saratoga Race Course Opening Day

Thursday, May 10, 2012

PODCAST: Vito Ciccarelli - The man behind Troy's music

In Episode 5 of Midday Ramble, Tom Caprood sits down with Vito Ciccarelli, longtime music coordinator for the City of Troy.

During the conversation, Ciccarelli touches on his history in the music industry, how he grew the Powers Park concert series in Lansingburgh into what it is today, upcoming concerts in the city, and even some new special events coming in 2012.

To see what he is up to, as well as what the city has planned, make sure to check out the upcoming events page on www.troyny.gov.