John A ByrneEditor-in-chief of BusinessWeek.com John A. Byrne sat down with Social Nerdia to talk about twittering and the value of social media. Here are some highlights:

“Years ago, if you were a smart, ambitious professional you distinguished yourself by having something worthwhile to say about your business or profession. You sought opportunities to be a panelist at an industry or professional trade association. You tried to give a speech at the local Chamber of Commerce. You wrote a bylined article for a trade journal. Today, your active participation in social media can convey similar status and prestige.

“We now have more than 50 editors and writers on Twitter seeking story ideas, sourcing suggestions, and advice on all kinds of editorial decisions from what our lead online story should be to what music to play on our podcasts.

“Lately, some news organizations have banned or heavily restricted the use of Twitter by reporters. That is a big mistake. Besides the advantage to engagement, Twitter is another tool to make newsgathering more effective.

“I envy the young people who are graduating now. Some of them will be creating the new Huffington Post or Slate or TechCrunch. Whatever your dream, don’t settle.”

Byrne’s Twittering has established him in the media world as somebody who really cares about reader engagement as well as a guy who “gets” social media. (Here‘s a story we did about a dinner he hosted for readers..)

As a reminder, he’ll be speaking at the Mediabistro Circus next week (on Wednesday at 1:45 to be exact), and you can still get tickets here.