A trip to Iowa, and a grand social media experiment

I had the pleasure of riding along with a unique group of people to Iowa this past weekend. Scott Emanuel and Ed Reggi of St. Louis organize busses for LGBT couples in the St. Louis area to make the trip to Iowa to get married. They have organized 14 busses and married 150 couples since 2009. I wrote a 1,000 word story on the group and took nearly 900 photos for Al Jazeera America.

Here are some of the images:

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I also took it upon myself to do a bit of a social media experiment. I was going to live tweet the trip as much as I could (interviews and photos were my first priority, though). I thought about how Twitter has already been used journalistically — but what about Vine? All I had seen from my colleagues was using the video-based social media platform to share silly videos.

I asked myself how I could use it journalistically.

In the end, I only ended up making two videos on the day, and tried to do it in a way that offered a more personal “preview” to the story. Below is a progression of my social media use throughout the day. Did this work? How else can journalists use Vine to help tell stories?

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