Getting some social media skills

Who better to teach us about blogging than a young and renowned blogger such as Kim Bui?  She may be a social media editor at KPCC, but what makes her so so easy to relate to is her humble beginnings in the blogging world.  She started her blog as a college student because, at the time, “weblogs were the thing.”  As simple and modest a start as any.

What Bui likes best about social networking today is the diversity of social networking options.  With so many different websites dedicated, discussion, commerce, image sharing, events, and networking, people are able to share a good deal of their thoughts and opnions with the world.  “There is no idea that is excess,” Bui emphasizes.  “You can share a few photos on Tumblr, a few on Flickr, etc.”

Bui began by giving us brief overviews of a wide range of social networking applications: the basics (WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr), the not-so-basics (Medium, Soundcloud, Branch, Coveritlive, Haiku Deck), and what distinguishes them from one another.  Tumblr, for example, is most commonly utilized as a photoblog — post a picture, write a couple of sentences, and there’s your post — whereas Blogger and WordPress are more suited for wordier posts. Simple enough.

The not-so-basics are newer tools that offer different ways to tell different kinds of stories. For example, Medium centers around the concept of “collections” — groups featuring articles and posts of any topic — and gives bloggers the opportunity to “create a collection about anything or contribute to a collection about anything.”  Similarly, Branch is a blog site that allows bloggers to collaborate with each other on topics, discussions, and debates.

 Bui gives the audience an assignment then.  She told a short, concise story and asked the members of audience to discuss the best way to tell it — which social media site to use, which presentation style, what elements to include.  “We’re all storytellers, in a way.  [Blogging], essentially, is…journalism.”  Nobody in the audience had the same idea as anyone else.  That was the point: it’s not so much about which presentation style or application is best.  “It’s more about finding whichever works best for you,” Bui expressed. And boy, did she express it well.

Eileen Hsu, V3con blogger

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