It’s always a sign of confidence in an employee when a new role is essentially created for them. It happened recently at AP, as we reported, with Paul Cheung. Another example of this phenomenon is the Financial Times‘ newly installed VP of communities Stacy-Marie Ishmael.
Among other things, Ishmael previously helped establish a New York presence for FT‘s “Alphaville” blog. Per an interview with journalism.co.uk reporter Alastair Reid, that’s where she really got a sense of just how much digital journalism has become a conversation:
“[At "Alphaville"] we had drinks with our readers and engaged in lots of debates with them and it made us all better journalists,” she said, “because it made us more responsive to what people are talking about, what they are interested in, what’s resonating with them.”
Ishmael also makes a really good point in the interview about how important it is to follow engaged readers onto the various, different social media platforms they are using. Not just to understand the dynamics of those platforms, but also because some readers can also act as bellwethers for the next, big social media thing.
Full press release about Ishmael’s appointment here. She will remain based in New York.
[Photo courtesy @s_m_i]