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Election Night Preps; Join Me

by John on 11/07/2016

jd-headshotElection night is like Super Bowl for me.

It’s that way for most of us in the news business – even if you are not working for a traditional news outlet.

Being a news guy for myself now is just as exciting and fun.  Plus, I don’t have to wear make-up.

It doesn’t mean I won’t be prepared.

And it doesn’t mean I don’t need help.  So join me on Election Night.

I will be posting on these two sites: My Twitter news site and my Facebook news site around 6 pm Eastern Time.

What I am looking for:

  • Any information from your hometown news sites about the Presidential and Congressional elections in your area that I might miss.
  • Any insights into something that might be happening that is out of the ordinary. (But how can this be any ordinary than it is.)
  • Anything you can add or correct me on by using confirmed, accredited, and sourced information.
  • Bring: an attitude of fun; some snarky posts about me; kindness for others who you might not know or who you disagree with; and pride in this electoral process that makes us all Americans.

The question I get asked the most is, “Do you miss not doing election night on the air?”

The answer is yes and no.

  • Yes, I miss the excitement and the action. There is no better place than a newsroom on election night – especially with upsets and surprises.  I worked with some great folks in a number of TV stations that made me look good.
  • No, because I feel like local TV has lost its direction. And frankly, during a presidential election year, most folks tune into the networks.  Also, with my complete transition into the new media, I think I am reaching more people and I am reaching people who are truly interested and inquisitive about solutions and real news that will change and improve our lives.

Here’s my proof of why I love my new news position with all of you.  Let me share with you an incident that happened to me online last year during the Paris attacks.  This is an excerpt from my new book which is in the works.

Twitter also gave me my most powerful feeling about being a journalist. This might not happen to all of you unless you are like me and you aggregate a lot of news to your social media followers.

This happened to me in November 2015. I was coming off the golf course late in the afternoon Eastern time. My phone was buzzing with news alerts. There had been shootings and explosions in Paris. It was the start of the mass terror attacks that killed so many people.

I continued to monitor it as I headed home. Once home, I opened my computer and started watching my Twitter feeds. I put in the #Parisattack and started following the breaking news from various organizations. I was following the BBC, LeMond 24, Sky News, the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, and many others.

All these news outlets had a presence in Paris. I began retweeting and also posting to my other sites and to my followers.

Again, I only used reputable sources. If something seemed outlandish, I held off until it could be verified by a number of different sources.

In addition, I posted information from the State Department that offered phone lines and websites to help Americans who were there or family members of people there who were still here in the United States.

I followed this for at least three hours. As the turmoil die down in Paris, I received a couple of messages. I don’t have the exact wording but they were from two parents of two different children who were studying in Paris at the time. Both parents separately thanked me for posting all the information. They followed me until they both found out that their kids were safe.

I have been in the news business for a long time. That was one of my most satisfying moments. Ironically it came when I was not a member of a news organization.

And that’s how we will fly on Election Night.  Hopefully there will be more civil moments.


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