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Global News reporter Su-Ling Goh shares her past experience with social media

By Jannah Jumamil on March 17, 2023

Social media can be helpful for many journalists, but unfortunately, many trolls can make the experience unlikeable. Su-Ling Goh, an anchor and health journalist at Global News, shares how she uses social media for work and how it changed later in her career.

Q: How important is social media in your work, and how do you use it professionally?

A: “Social media used to be a lot more important in my work. We were really encouraged for a while to post about your stories on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, and try to promote your stories that were coming up that night. [We] asked for viewer engagement. Like let’s say you’re doing a story on transit safety, like has anyone ever had a bad experience on transit that you want to share? But Global actually changed the sort of unofficial policy during the pandemic. They said you don’t have to do social media anymore if you don’t want to… And that was because of all the trolls that started popping up during the pandemic.”

Q: Instead of social media, what do you use to share your story out there?

A: “Probably TV, right? We promote our stories in commercials. And on our main Global Edmonton Twitter account or Instagram account or whatever that will promote stories that are coming up. But just keeping it really generic. We have the radio, and we’re affiliated with a bunch of radio stations, so we’ll also do it that way. Yeah, in terms of promoting our stories, that’s probably about it, but I won’t personally promote a story, but I might like to retweet from the global Edmonton account.”

Q: Do you use social media personally? How do you use it?

A: “I’m on Facebook, and it’s a private account. If I want to share something on there, I share, but I don’t share a lot on there. I mostly use it for seeing what people are up to with old friends or whatever. I do use Twitter if it’s something nice, like when someone sent me a nice gift. A physio clinic that I had done a story with that made a nice gift talking about how a lot of people had never heard of their services. And I helped people be aware that there was a certain kind of therapy, and there was like a nice little card from the people who had come to them which was signed by the people who had come to them because they saw my story. I tweeted that because I was like, this is so nice. And I don’t think I got any negative comments on that.”

Q: Do you have a separate personal account from a professional account?

A: “I only have one Twitter account. That one I usually share, and that would be as personal as it gets, as it gets. For personal stuff, I mostly use Facebook, and then I post the occasional thing on Instagram, but I don’t love Instagram.”

Q: What were the benefits of using social media when you guys were still actively using it?

A: “It was a really easy way to find people for your stories. For example, that transit safety one would be a good example or just like has your family encountered anything like this? Do you want to share your story? So it was a good way to reach out to people that way.”

Q: Aside from the trolls, what were the other disadvantages of using social media?

A: “In a personal way, you can lose a lot of time just being on social media. With scrolling through Facebook and all of a sudden, it’s like, oh, where did that half an hour go? But I would say the trolls definitely are the worst part.”

Q: Since you guys aren’t using social media anymore to look for people for a story, how do you do that now?

A: “On our main Global Edmonton account, we will occasionally ask if someone wants to share their story. I think it’s easier to do it that way because if we get attacked, it’s not so personal. They’re attacking Global Edmonton and not a specific reporter. We occasionally still do it that way, but honestly we just, we ask around. And if it’s a common issue like sick kids or whatever, we go to a playground and find them, find parents there to talk to. But most of our stories, most of my stories, come in through our email.”

Goh says that she didn’t get the worse of the trolls as some reporters would receive offensive comments from them. Nowadays, Goh gets her stories from viewers who pitch into her email.



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