Poynter Online Groups: A New Way to Interact with Poynter — and One Another

By Ellyn Angelotti
Interactivity Editor

When we asked users last year how much they care about connecting or reconnecting with colleagues, we were surprised at the high level of interest. Maybe we shouldn’t have been. When we set up a page on Facebook called “Journalists and Facebook,” hundreds of you joined right up and more than 5,700 belong today. 

That kind of response — and the need it suggests — is driving the creation of a network of our own — Poynter Online Groups.  Not exactly social networking, not exactly professional networking, Poynter Groups represents our effort to tailor something special for the Poynter Online audience. We’ll differentiate our service from others you may belong to by keeping journalism at its center — especially content created by you and resources produced by Poynter faculty and staff. 

How will this work?
Say you’re a devoted reader of Al’s Morning Meeting. Right now you can read Al’s column each day and post feedback. With with the new Morning Meeting group, you’ll be able to join a community of colleagues able to swap tips and techniques, discuss good work by colleagues around the world and more easily connect with (and share) training and other resources. 

When can I join?
We expect to roll out Poynter Groups, initially with participants in Poynter seminars, in the next few months. Between now and then, we’ll be seeking your counsel on what we might offer that’s not provided by such existing services as Facebook, Ning or others. Or things to avoid.

In addition to groups pegged to seminars and NewsU courses, we’ll create groups associated with our columns and blogs as well as broader groups based on content areas. We envision these groups as portals enabling users to more easily discover the resources they need to produce better journalism. 

We’re also planning groups that connect journalists by geography, by current and former newsrooms, and by craft or beat. Stay tuned for details — and please give us a hand in the meantime by addressing the following:

  • What would you like to see in a network for journalists?
  • What online networks do you currently use? And what do you find useful (and less so) about them?
  • What groups might Poynter create to help improve your work as a journalist?

We have made it easy to comment on posts, however we require civility and encourage full names to that end (first initial, last name is OK). Please read our guidelines here before commenting.