Facebook, the world at your fingertips

by Elizabeth Hyde

As the youngest person working in the Leaven office, I have the unique advantage of growing up using social media. Like the rest of the staff, I’ve found Facebook to be extremely useful for the purposes of the diocesan paper.

Last summer, the Leaven rolled out phase one of our plan to reach a wider audience — the redesign of our website, which was recognized with a first place award from the Catholic Press Association for best website. This summer, Moira Cullings and the rest of the staff at the Leaven have been working tirelessly at expanding that readership through use of social media like Facebook and Twitter.

Some influential speakers in society, like popular comedian Louis CK, often stress how younger generations have become addicted to using social media like Facebook. Ironically, I can honestly say that I never used Facebook much until I began to contribute to The Leaven’s Facebook account.

From my years working on my high school newspaper, I’d always viewed Facebook as a vehicle to promote a product, like a newspaper. So more of a marketing tool than an end in itself.

Only since working at the Leaven have I begun to understand how great it is that Facebook can also be used to promote exclusive content. The reality of using social media is that we have become even more interconnected, with access to more information than ever before.

And, The Leaven has a lot of it. Our photographers shoot scores more pictures at every event that our print product can ever hold. And now they’re starting to shoot video as well, which can only be distributed through an online medium.

But more than that, Facebook gives us the opportunity to follow what our priests are doing on a daily basis. (Yes, The Leaven Facebook pages shares highlights from many of their pages, as well some from our fellow laborers in the vineyard, as well, like Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas.)

Nor has it ever been as easy to keep up with the different ministries the Archbishop is visiting and working on. Or the different activities and programs going on in the far reaches of the archdiocese.

We are lucky to live in a world where we hold the world at our fingertips.

And speaking of the world, World Youth Day is rapidly approaching, and The Leaven is sending both a photographer and a reporter (my sister Katie) to cover it.

So what better time to make sure you don’t miss any of the coverage offered by your diocesan newspaper? Sign up now for a Facebook account, if you don’t have one already, and make “The Leaven Newspaper” the first thing you “like.”

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