Real Time Editor - News

Editorial Charlotte, NC


McClatchy’s real-time teams are staffed with ambitious, high-energy journalists who track what people are talking about right now and anticipate what they will be talking about next.

Real-Time News Editors are the fastest members of these high-speed teams. They know when and how to accelerate publishing -- and when to slow down. The Editor leads the team of reporters who find and write lightning-quick stories driving the conversation online. It could be the latest inconceivable crime, a breaking scandal in the business world, or a shark photo that people cannot stop sharing on Facebook – all in the same hour.

The Editor quarterbacks these stories and coaches real-time reporters so their work is fast, accurate, and loaded with all the audience ammunition in our arsenal -- an irresistible headline, impeccable SEO, and writing that makes people want to read it. The Editor knows real-time and reporting equally well, and is expert in how to combine the two for great stories with great reach.

The National Editor coordinates with all regions to share story tips, track what’s in progress, and eliminate duplication so that real-time reporters across the company are working on distinct stories that attract unique readers.

The National Editor works closely with SEO and audience growth teams to monitor and analyze trends and provide ongoing feedback that enables real-time reporters to continuously hone their craft and fuel the company’s real-time growth.

These positions may be located in any of our newsrooms.

Responsibilities include:

         Using CrowdTangle, NewsWhip and other tools to identify stories that people will be talking about

         Developing strong story angles quickly with reporters, so that they are not simply duplicating what’s been published elsewhere, but are finding something new and interesting that will pop

         Tracking SEO trends in close coordination with the national SEO team to find and optimize real-time stories and all SEO elements in them (meta title, keywords, summary)

         Following trending stories published by the team to see what people are saying about them on social media and seeking follow-up possibilities

         Mining analytics in real-time with Chartbeat, and daily and weekly with Omniture and other tools for audience data that offers insights into each reporter’s stories and the team’s trends

         Collaborating with video producers to identify story opportunities and to ensure that video rights are secured whenever possible so that there is video with all stories, ideally in our player

         Identifying when to find original sourcing (e.g. police reports, lawsuits, published research) and when to make a phone call for confirmation

         Ensuring reporters understand best practices for aggregation, sourcing and attribution so that stories accurately represent the material’s origins

         Ensuring reporters understand best practices for use of images so they are used fairly and legally

         Teaching reporters how to self-edit and how to edit others

         Communicating about tracking toward monthly traffic goals

         Infusing real-time storytelling throughout our newsrooms by sharing lessons, brainstorming headlines and offering other expertise

         Keeping current with the latest data, audience and storytelling tools

         Working closely with growth editors to ensure that real-time stories are posted on social channels

         Leading breaking news so that the team is routinely publishing in one minute as soon as information is confirmed, with one or two sentences and then iterating every few minutes until news quiets or the story is handed off to another reporter

         Coordinating with newsrooms during breaking news so all appropriate people know after an initial story has been published, and are ready to feed information and/or take a handoff

         Collaborating on share text to accompany stories on Facebook

         Communicating on Slack continuously with your team, newsrooms in the regions, the Washington bureau, the national real-time team and the McClatchy News Network to coordinate so that there is no duplication or confusion over who is doing what

         Submitting stories to local and national aggregators (e.g. Drudge, Fark, Reddit, others)

         Assigning stories as needed when reporters cannot self-assign or require triage

         Guiding the style and tone for real-time stories so they are conversational but appropriate (especially in use of graphic language and visuals)

         Monitoring the stories coming out of all newsrooms in the region for opportunities to share relevant or interesting stories with your audience; package and push content from those newsrooms to your readers

         Optimizing McClatchy and wire content for sharing on social media

         Communicate with newsrooms about shared content proactively and in response to queries

         Coordinating coverage for major expected events

         Scheduling so that the team is staffed seven days a week, at least 18 hours a day

         Hiring and overseeing staff


The most compelling candidates will have:

        The ability to edit and write quickly, accurately and well

        Solid news judgment and excellent journalism ethics

        An intuitive sense of what’s important and interesting

        A good grasp of what drives readers to share on Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms

        Ability to optimize stories to capitalize on social media engagement and traffic

        A strong entrepreneurial spirit, deep curiosity and extremely high energy

        A collaborative style that works comfortably across teams spread throughout the office and company

        A team cheerleader that seeks a win for all

        Extraordinarily fine-tuned communication skills to identify who needs to know what when so that everyone can succeed together

Job Requirements

Education:  College degree required.

Experience: Professional journalism experience. 

Skills Needed: News judgment; excellent writing and editing skills; facility with social media and SEO; quick study of CMSes and storytelling tools.

Personal Attributes:  Energy, flexibility, and online smarts. The ability to monitor a vast amount of information for a wide audience, matched with discerning judgment about what to pursue. The ability to execute both quickly and well, with creativity.