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A weekly guest blog written by GateHouse newsroom editors designed to provide insight into today's topics and issues facing the journalism profession.
Four reasons top editors should be on Twitter
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By David Arkin
In Their Words is a weekly guest blog written by GateHouse newsroom editors. It is designed to provide insight into today's topics and issues facing the journalism profession and to add context as they relate to newsrooms. The authors will share ...
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In Their Words
In Their Words is a weekly guest blog written by GateHouse newsroom editors. It is designed to provide insight into today's topics and issues facing the journalism profession and to add context as they relate to newsrooms. The authors will share valuable best practices, content opportunities and advice on the many challenges facing our industry.
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Aug. 2, 2011 12:01 a.m.

On Monday, Poynter's Jim Romensko provided a list of the Top 10 newspapers by circulation and details on if the editors of those papers are active on Twitter.

Not surprisingly, the answer was no, most are not active.

The majority — about 70 percent aren't active or don't have accounts.

The information developed because Boston Globe Editor Marty Baron just got on Twitter, at his 10-year anniversary at the Globe.

The post raises the question if editors should be expected to be on Twitter?

In short, yes. All top editors should have a Twitter account and here's why:

1. Being on Twitter and following organizations and individuals will provide editors of all size newspaper with an insight on issues important to their readership and will provide them a new and different way of consuming information about their industry and communities. It's really a quick way to stay on top of news, issues and trends.

2. As Twitter grows, so will the expectation in communities that those plugged into local issues are participating. It's a brand thing and when readers or leaders do a search and find that the top editor at the paper isn't on Twitter, it's puzzling. Maybe today it's not something that readers and officials would expect, but at Twitter's current growth pace, it will over time.

3. Editors being on Twitter will drive traffic to your website if the editor is posting links to content on your site. Individuals click on links in Twitter when they trust the individual who is posting the Tweet. Who at your newspaper would have more credibility than the editor or publisher when it comes to recommending a story to click on?

4. Editors don't just have to share links, they could share details about how the newspaper is covering a story, a project they are working on or how they handled a sticky issue. It's a way to provide information and talk to readers.

Keeping up with Twitter is challenging, but it's worth the time investment, even for really busy editors. Editors, if they follow the right people and organizations, can receive a wealth of useful information and can help their website's brand and growth.

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