Editor’s note: I Follow is all about ESPN employees on Twitter: what they tweet, whom they follow and how you can interact socially with anyone and everyone.
In addition to her role as a senior writer for ESPN The Magazine and ESPN.com, Alyssa Roenigk is a veteran action sports reporter who has covered multiple X Games, Olympics and action sports events.
She will serve as an on-air reporter at X Games Aspen 2013, which gets under way this Thursday on various ESPN platforms. X Games Aspen 2013 is the official kickoff to the much anticipated X Games global expansion. Front Row caught up with Roenigk as she prepared for Winter X and she shared her thoughts on the upcoming event and being part of the Twitterverse.
Twitter handle: @espn_alyssa
(as of 1/22/13)
What’s the Twitterverse like within the action sports world?
It’s xtremely active. The action sports world has always been community driven, so the athletes in these sports were some of the first to really tap into Twitter as a means of increasing their value to sponsors and as a way to connect with their fans. And for me, it was a great way to track down very hard to track down athletes. “Surfing in Indo today!” Ahh. So, that’s why Coco Ho isn’t answering her phone.
How has Twitter changed the way you approach your job, as both an on-air talent and a writer?
I have my phone in my hand or pocket a lot more these days, and I take more photos while I’m working now. That has changed. To be honest, I wish I were better at Twitter. When I’m on site at an event like, say, the X Games or the Olympics, I am very active on Twitter. And I try to Tweet only when I am going to be adding something to the conversation or providing behind-the-scenes information readers at home wouldn’t have access to otherwise. I think of my Twitter followers as readers. I would not Tweet anything I wouldn’t also include in a blog or magazine story and sign my name to. We have so many incredible experiences while reporting the stories we tell, and none of that makes it into the stories. I write a personal blog for that reason, to share those stories.
How do you determine whether to follow someone on Twitter?
I follow a lot of the athletes I cover, especially if I’m actively working on a story on them. It gives me a window into their personality. I follow a lot of people simply because they’re funny or sites/magazines/bands/music blogs because they Tweet interesting links/stories/facts. I use my feed as a news source, for sure. But also for entertainment.