Strictly professional – what’s public and what’s private for journalists on Twitter?

Over on the BBC blog Rory Cellan-Jones debates the pros and cons of Twitter – where does the professional cross with the personal? What’s public and what’s private on the web?

Cellan-Jones, the BBC’s technology correspondent, had a recent wake-up call when PR contacts tracked his Twitters. A light-hearted blog by Cellan-Jones on the topic of Scrabulous led to an equally light-hearted message to a Twitter follower, which was then quoted on another website in a more serious manner.

In the latest posting he writes, ‘It’s a ‘a useful reminder that Twitter – like so many other online forums – is a public place, and what you say there may be used in evidence against you.’ He thinks that perhaps he ‘can no longer afford to be quite so careless.’

Needless to say, is now keenly following Cellan-Jones’ tweets. Follow us too: @journalismnews, strictly professionally of course…

5 thoughts on “Strictly professional – what’s public and what’s private for journalists on Twitter?

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  2. Judith Townend Post author

    Over at we’ve been accused of losing our sense of humour. The intention of the post was to flag up Cellan-Jones’ concerns about quoting from Twitter, rather than directly criticising James Graham’s blog post.

    As James’ later comment identified, blog posts are very much subject to interpretation by each reader, and his use of the Twitter quote might have got Rory Cellan-Jones’ goat more than was intended. Likewise, Cellan-Jones’ BBC post provoked Graham on his blog, and so it goes on.

    Yes, I certainly can be bothered. Journalists are fascinated to see where social media takes and develops reporting, and how it redefines the remits of journalism, especially when journalists start to use different voices in a public manner. All we’re doing at is documenting that, and hoping to stimulate further useful debate…

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