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February 5, 2010
AP Values Tweets as News Signals

After 164 years in the news business, the Associated Press is turning to Twitter as key source of story leads.

That nugget was provided by four staffers from the AP's Phoenix regional hub to the January meeting of the Arizona Book Publishing Association. Linda VandeVrede provides coverage of the meeting on her PR Strategy Blog.

"Interestingly," VandeVrede writes, "most of the folks at the Associated Press do not use services such as HARO (Help a Reporter Out) or Profnet. They do, however, follow Twitter closely to determine what topics are trending the most and view it as a powerful news-gathering tool. You can also join their Facebook page (AP) as a fan to learn more information."

AP writers value the ready availability of experts when news breaks, she notes.

"One way to get their (AP's) attention is to follow the news and as soon as news breaks in your particular area, send them an e-mail with the expert for that topic and their cell phone number. That can be particularly helpful to an AP reporter who is on deadline and needs to get a story out about breaking news.

"You can also send them the expert’s contact information during non-breaking news time, just so they can have it handy." 

VandeVrede offers more insights into connecting with the AP. Above all, the AP values accuracy, and your own credibility with the world's leading news service hinges on being truthful and forthright. 


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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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