Junior shares personal journey with Feather’s social media account
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.
— The Feather Online (@thefeather) March 1, 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.
Follow Feather staffer, Logan Lewis, ‘20, as he introduces us to the #FCauction, March 10. Stay tuned to the Feather’s social media accounts for updates through the night. @fresnochristian #thefeather pic.twitter.com/myZMlsV0ej
— The Feather Online (@thefeather) March 11, 2018
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.
Logan Lewis, ‘20, interviews FC athletes of the year seniors Tyler Villines and Cayla Rivas, May 7. Congratulations Villines and Rivas for your achievements and thank you for your dedication to so many sports teams. @fresnochristian #TheFeather pic.twitter.com/Nne9JRToeI
— The Feather Online (@thefeather) May 8, 2018
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.
Caleb Crevier from @Champs4Tomorrow shows journalist, Logan Lewis, ‘20, how he spins a basketball, Oct. 2. Later this month, Crevier along with his father hope set the world record for spinning 30 basketballs at once. @fresnochristian #TheFeather pic.twitter.com/m8Ydidu9cq
— The Feather Online (@thefeather) October 2, 2018
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 first week of @fresnochristian is over but the activities still go on. Tomorrow, Aug. 11, the #FCfootball team will have multiple scrimmages starting, 8 a.m. The #FCleadership will head to @humelake for a day retreat, 9 a.m. Stay tuned for more events coming up! #TheFeather pic.twitter.com/b5gopbYVuF
— The Feather Online (@thefeather) August 11, 2018
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.
Worship team advisor, Daniel Garrison, teaches how to make the perfect pancake! The class is celebrating their completion of the semester with a pancake and ice cream party! What's your favorite pancake topping? @fresnochristian #thefeather pic.twitter.com/QwlPGixiGw
— The Feather Online (@thefeather) December 14, 2018
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.
Boys varsity basketball defeats WCPA, 71-53, Feb. 5. They will play their final league game at Laton, Feb. 6. Check out this video of students storming the court after the victory! @fresnochristian #thefeather @PAGMETER pic.twitter.com/RbXLiQ8Vzx
— The Feather Online (@thefeather) February 6, 2019
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.
California is home to nine of the nation’s 58 national parks and holds the title for most national parks in one state. Read all about our neighboring treasures, and what our students have to say about them in Toryn Triplitt's latest article! #thefeatherhttps://t.co/I5sa9wsBoQ
— The Feather Online (@thefeather) February 9, 2019
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.@thefeather, Instagram @thefeatheronline and Facebook @thefeatheronline.
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