Toward the beginning of this month, The Atlantic magazine posted an editorial cartoon sequence to its Instagram account, which got me thinking: is there a place for opinion, and particularly editorial cartoons, on high school publications staffs’ social media accounts?
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If a staff were to try to integrate editorial cartoons in the same way, I would definitely recommend they identify the content as opinion to avoid confusing the reader. It would also be a worthwhile discussion with your editorial board to consider whether this would be an inappropriate use of the staff’s account. If you haven’t done so already, this is probably a good time to establish your staff’s social media policies (as adviser Jill Burns explained in this post).
Here are a few questions that immediately come to mind, which could be great discussion starters:
- Will readers make the distinction between news and editorial content?
- Will the use of social media accounts to share opinion content negatively impact news and other non-opinion content?
- Would it be better to create alternative accounts that serve different purposes (like The New York Times does)? How might that work? What challenges might we face?
- What value is there in sharing content in this way? Would it also be cross-posted to the website and, perhaps, other social media accounts, like Twitter and Facebook?
If you know that your audience is already on a social media platform like Instagram, it makes sense to bring your content to them. This is one new way to do that.