Socializing “Old Media” – An Interview with Andrea Stone of the Huffington Post

Andrea Stone, senior national correspondent for the Huffington Post, has had a front row seat watching the social media Darwinism rampant in journalism, where the name of the game is adapt or die. Having spent most of her career as a reporter for USA TODAY, Andrea has seen slow to adapt reporters fall by the wayside.

As a journalist, you MUST be on social media. If you’re not, you’re probably not working anymore or have changed careers.

With nearly 63,000 Facebook subscribers, Andrea knows what she is talking about. She even participated in a panel discussion on the evolution of journalism at her class reunion at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

“This is a HUGE issue for journalists. I was on a panel last year at my reunion about the evolution of journalism. It was all about making the transition to online and how older journalists really need to learn this stuff. It also goes to the changes from being ‘objective’ to the new ethos of having a point of view.”

For those that have been able to survive the onslaught of social media in the old world of newsprint, these channels represent new opportunities and new threats –including the freedom to share your opinions.

“Since coming to the Huffington Post, I’ve been able to share more opinions publicly (I didn’t share any personal views when I was at USA TODAY). I’ve used social media to express my thoughts on politics and public policy as well as subjects of special interest personally.”

And express views she does. Andrea maintains an active daily presence not only on Facebook, but TwitterGoogle+ and, to a lesser extent, LinkedIn. She also shares her Huffpost stories on StumbleUpon. This fluency in social media relations has earned her a spot on The Huffington Post’s “50 people in Politics to Follow.”

Moral of the story: The rise and fall of the print media empire demonstrates that journalism is only the first of many industries that are faced with the choice to adapt or die. A word of advice — You better start tweeting or you’ll sink like a stone, for times they are a-changing.


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