Social Media Institute accepts client applications

Our Social Media Institute at VCU is looking for nonprofit clients this summer. Our students will design social media campaigns based on the needs of the clients. Please follow the link below for more information and please share with nonprofits you know! The deadline to apply is June 13.

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“VCU votes” campaign wins award

Our non-partisan “VCU votes” campaign at the Robertson School of Media and Culture won the 2014 VCU Community Engagement Award for Teaching. The campaign utilized social media engagement and advertising techniques, multimedia news reporting as well as voter registration and Election Day drives in an attempt to increase VCU student voting during the gubernatorial election in Virginia last fall. Continue reading

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iPadJournos presentation at Journalism Interactive Conference

ipadjournosI will be presenting the iPadJournos project at the Teach-A-Thon session of the Journalism Interactive Conference at the University of Maryland this Friday (April 4). The presentation will focus on how mobile journalism has become a permanent part of the curriculum at VCU. The following are resources about and from the iPadJournos project that give an in-depth look at how the project works and which technology is used for the mobile reporting for our media partner WTVR-CBS 6.

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Social media campaigns. Real clients. This summer @ VCU.

IYLEPHere is a great opportunity to engage in social media and develop campaigns for nonprofit clients in Central Virginia. VCU’s Robertson School of Media & Culture is offering its Social Media Institute, which is open to all undergraduate and graduate majors. In July, Vivian Medina Messner and I will work with students on social media projects during the four-week intensive summer class “Social Media Campaigns” (MASC 491) and “Social Media Leadership” (MASC 691). Continue reading

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Social media and the Olympics

The Winter Olympics in Sochi have seen a flurry of social media posts even before the opening ceremony on Friday. Pictures taken by journalists showing the conditions in the hotels in Sochi have gotten worldwide attention. And the strict social media policies for athletes that forbid any video posting have caused widespread criticism. I was interviewed on the impact of social media at the Olympics on the Jimmy Barrett Show on 1140-WRVA on Tuesday. Continue reading

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Ahead in the spring: Classes and talks

This spring semester, I am teaching a new special topics class “Social Media Research,” in which graduate and undergraduate students will develop their own research projects. The deliverable for each of the research teams at the end of the semester will be a conference paper. I am also teaching an undergraduate class “Reporting for Print and Web.” You can find the syllabi for both of the classes under Teaching. Continue reading

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NPR interview on Chris Christie presser

The scandal over bridge lane closures by his administration as a means of political retaliation has put New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on the defensive. The possible Republican presidential contender gave a two-hour press conference on Tuesday, expressing his own outrage, taking on responsibility, but denying any involvement of his own. I was interviewed afterwards by NPR’s Alan Greenblatt on Christie’s crisis management. Continue reading

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Joining the Google Glass Explorer Program

Just last week I was selected to join the Google Glass Explorer Program and the glasses already arrived yesterday. I will share my experiences and experiments with this technology on my new blog Glass@VCU. My project is generously supported by VCU’s Center for Teaching Excellence and the Richard T. Robertson School of Media and Culture. Continue reading

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New social media research course offered

I am offering a new class on social media research at VCU this coming spring semester. In the course “MASC 591 – Social Media Research,” I will develop and carry out research projects with graduate and undergraduate students to study the impact of social media in the field of mass communications. Students will apply mass communication research methods, such as content analysis, in-depth interviewing and survey, to answer research questions about social media that derive from the current state of the field. Continue reading

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iPadJournos cover gubernatorial race in Virginia


The student reporters in my iPadJournos project covered the election in Virginia for over the last two months  and landed interviews with gubernatorial candidates Terry McAuliffe, Ken Cuccinelli and Robert Sarvis. Our mobile and social media reporting project, which is now a capstone in VCU’s journalism program, covered all major topics in this election and reported from the polls on Election Day as well as the candidates’ election parties in Tysons Corner and Richmond when the results came in on Nov. 5. Continue reading

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