Social media success is a relative thing. The World’s Facebook page surpassed 16,000 likes this week.
Also this week, Academy Awards host Ellen DeGeneres tweeted a photo of herself surrounded by famous friends during the Oscars telecast Sunday night and the image went so viral, so fast, that it temporarily broke Twitter. The photo has been retweeted more than 3 million times.
Here in the digital department, we are thrilled about the newspaper’s healthy and ever growing number of Facebook fans. The fact that so many readers follow The World on social media tells us that while people are connecting to the work of the paper’s talented reporters in different ways, the demand for reliable reporting remains.
This week, some of the most popular stories on our website and social media pages were updates about mountain pass closures and a crack discovered in Wanapum Dam. In both cases, the web allowed us to post breaking information as soon as it became available — closer to a 24-hour cable news broadcast schedule than traditional newspaper publishing.
The tragic deaths of former Performing Arts Center director Rita Brown from cancer and Iraq war veteran Jason A. Herrin in a car accident drew thousands of online readers to The World’s Facebook page, where many offered condolences and shared fond memories. In moments such as these, social media sites are able to get beyond the role of selfie validation machine to actually foster community building, which is what The Wenatchee World aims to do with its pages.
And then there was the story of a tough dog in Twisp named Shelby, which also caught the attention of our Facebook fans this week. After surviving a wolf attack last year, poor Shelby was mauled by a cougar on Monday. The dog survived again. We posted Reporter K.C. Mehaffey’s article about Shelby on Facebook Tuesday night and readers left notes of support for the dog on the page, along with warnings about leaving pets outdoors.
Beginning this week, readers who follow The World on Facebook will have several opportunities to win tickets to see the band Chicago perform at Town Toyota Center on March 18, along with gift certificates to local businesses. These contest posts go up on Facebook at least once every day, so be sure to watch for them. Winners are being announced through March 14.
Kelli Scott is digital content coordinator for The Wenatchee World. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.