COLUMN: My experience as Feather’s Twitter editor

COLUMN: My experience as Feather’s Twitter editor

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Junior shares personal journey with Feather’s social media account

Cayla Rivas | The Feather Online

Logan Lewis, ’20, edits the Feather’s Twitter page on his second year as a staffer.

Today, Twitter users tweet world wide over 500 million times per day, a number that continues to grow. Typically, tweets either go viral within minutes or drop beneath waves of content. With only 280 characters, it seems difficult to captivate an audience. Here at The Feather, this is what we aim for.

As the Twitter editor, I am responsible for covering all events relating to Fresno Christian High School, as well as some local community events. It is a lot, but planning ahead takes off some of the load.

I knew I wanted to run Twitter as soon as I joined The Feather, but it took me a year to get there. After watching Braden Bell edit our Twitter page last year, I began to help anytime he was unable to tweet.

On Serve Day 2018, I shot my first video for The Feather’s Twitter, acting on a spontaneous idea. The Feather staff loved the video, and I realized Twitter provides a cool way to report live from an event. 

In the following tweet, Lewis informs others of the work done at the Central California Food Bank for Serve Day 2018.

After Serve Day, I took Kids Day, the auction and many more events as an opportunity to make quick, fun videos. I loved this because I could retweet to build my personal portfolio, as well as show my family and friends. Plus, The Feather benefited from displaying live coverage.

Featuring other people adds a new dynamic. In addition, the guests often use their own accounts to retweet, which increases the impressions of the video.

All these videos are done on the first take, and I don’t provide them with the questions ahead of time. The shots are their raw, unedited reactions and responses to my questions.

I used Twitter before joining The Feather, but working as an editor this year opened my eyes to all the connections and networking possibilities this app provides.

Unfortunately, Twitter does not allow tweets to be edited once they have been published. This means typos are costly, since deleting a tweet erases all previous interaction.

Imagine giving everyone an entire multi-media advertising and marketing studio for free. That is exactly what Twitter, along with other social media platforms, has done. The actions of tweeting, retweeting, tagging and replying all build connections between people and increases one’s connectivity and popularity.

Balancing this position and school work flow poses a great challenge. Many classes enforce a strict no-phone rules, making it impossible to tweet during class. Knowing that something time-sensitive needs to be uploaded or being unable to reply to my advisers drives me insane. Thankfully, my advisers forgive and understand that I cannot always tweet, and the classes I am allowed to tweet in are equally distributed throughout the day.

The Feather publishes many types of tweets. Frequently, tweets promote upcoming events. Then, during and after the event, we publish photos, videos and updates. I also feature random, cool things that happen throughout the school day, including shark dissections or drama games. These promote school departments, as well as provide glimpses of life at Fresno Christian.

Sports make up a large portion of our tweets, and I find them the most difficult. Games require promotions, halftime scores, final scores, and any notable plays that occur. Live-tweeting sports gets particularly tricky when there is an away game that our Feather staff is not at, or when four games happen in only a few hours.

One of my favorite things that comes with covering sports is interacting with popular accounts like Nick Papagni, who runs the prestigious PAG METER account.

Something that we have improved on this year is promoting articles. Every day, I share at least one article, with a quote or fact that grabs reader’s attention and encourages them to read more. I then follow with a link to the article, which displays a nice box that is easy for viewers to click on. Using Bit.ly, a link-shortening website, frees up characters to use elsewhere.

A large portion of The Feather’s tweets feature photos taken by our lovely lady crew of photojournalists. I am constantly in contact with their small, but mighty, team of six. Airdrop makes sharing photos with any Apple device quick and simple, making it one of my most used tools.  

The photojournalists run a popular Instagram account for The Feather. I use different photos than the Instagram post, because of the way The Feather homepage displays our social media images, all in a row. Repeats are not attractive.

Students should understand that what they post on social media lasts forever, and can impact them more than they imagine. I often see peers retweeting and liking inappropriate posts, including tweets that promote violence, sex, drugs, racism, bullying, you name it. This sticks out as a red flag to anyone professional, and might cost a job or scholarship. It’s important to build a clean portfolio, making you risk-free to potential employers.

Something I need to improve on is pre-writing tweets. Pre-planning greatly decreases stress, and keeps me more organized, efficient, and effective. Ideally, I would store all my tweets for the next day in my notes, waiting to be copied, pasted over and tweeted as soon as the photos are taken.

Another thing I think would further our influence is studying our analytics. Twitter provides these free, and they show tons of different graphs and charts, so one can improve one’s engagement.

I believe high school students should realize the potential of Twitter. Most don’t understand the relationships and connections it allows for, as well as advertising capabilities. It is so much more than just memes and silly videos.

I have much to learn as The Feather’s “Twitter guy”, and am improving everyday. I can totally see myself running a social media page as a career. The Feather is preparing me for that, and I am very grateful.

For more articles, check out SPLC declares 2019 “Year of the Student Journalist” and COLUMN: #EverydayJournalism.

Logan Lewis can be reached via email and Twitter @logan6300.
Follow The Feather via Twitter @thefeather, Instagram @thefeatheronline and Facebook @thefeatheronline.

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By |2019-04-08T08:30:14-07:00February 22nd, 2019|Column, Opinions|1 Comment

About the Author:

Logan Lewis
“You are the only Bible some unbelievers will ever read.” - John Macarthur. Logan Lewis, ‘20, aspires to pursue a career in ministry or sound engineering. Over the summer, Lewis studied camera, computer graphics, lights and sound while volunteering 7-10 hours at Peoples Church a week. When he’s not behind the soundboard, he’s playing on the varsity boys basketball team. While Lewis was a junior high cabin leader at Calvin Crest, he learned patience and leadership, and plans on continuing volunteering through CSF and as a mentor in the campus Brother to Brother program. This is Lewis’ second year participating in The Feather, and is passionate about making videos for social media, as well as managing the Feather Twitter account. Lewis is considering majoring in divinity or audio production.

One Comment

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    Kayla Fermanian February 22, 2019 at 8:57 am - Reply

    great article !

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