Ann Curry, news anchor of NBC’s “Today” show, spoke animatedly at the 140 Character Conference in New York on June 15, 2009, about news as a public service rather than a business and the growing impact of social media services like Twitter.
I caught up with her as she was leaving and did a 3-minute video interview, in which she says, “People want to smarten up — and they want Twitter to smarten up” so that it can play a key role in the news ecosystem.
“Journalism is an act of faith in the future, and it is a war,” she said. “Oftentimes I feel bloodied with a sword unsheathed. That’s because you’re fighting for stories that you want covered.”
Curry smartly uses Twitter as a sort of electronic newspaper to spread the word about stories that didn’t make it on air. She points to the fact that many important stories don’t get a lot of attention — in both traditional media and on Twitter. Viewers and users “want to watch something more salacious and that makes me crazy.”
She says of Twitter (where she tweets daily at @AnnCurry): “I look at Twitter as my own two-way broadcasting. I put things out, I hear things back, I gain from people’s perspectives all over the world. … I don’t feel threatened [by Twitter and new forms of media], I feel excited.”
I wrote more about our brief encounter over at Socialmedia.biz: