Online makes fast-break play on TPP deal

There’s nothing like working at a newspaper when “breaking news” occurs.

For journalists, it’s a little like overtime in a big hockey game — the pressure’s on and you want to do the best you can to help your team win.

The big story this week was the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement.

I noticed something was up shortly after I awoke and checked out Twitter to see what was making news. Last Monday it was #TPP.

The first thing I needed to do was let our WP Twitter followers know this landmark agreement had been reached. Easier said than done.

I immediately started scouring the torrent of tweets using the #TPP hashtag, but I was having difficulty finding the sort of “credible” source for this news I was looking for.

Lots of individuals were commenting, but I was looking for a statement from, say, the Government of Canada, or its trade minister. I eventually found something from the “other WP” — The Washington Post.

At work I had a quick chat with news editor Terry Fries and immediately set about finding a wire service story to post on the WP website.

Moments later Karen Briere filed her first story of the day on the subject, and I was able to add our own reporting on the TPP deal to our site.

Managing editor Michael Raine emailed some web-sized photos to complement our coverage.

Throughout the day various WP reporters scoured their beats for reaction to the news.

Winnipeg reporter Ed White would gather reaction from the meat sectors and supply management folks. Brian Cross would be talking to grain and oilseed growers.

Yours truly and the web team established a “one stop” page that would contain all our TPP coverage, including a Twitter widget that would gather any tweet tagged #TPP, and a Storify collection of stories from other news sources, images and social media comments.

It was a fun game Monday. And I think the WP team played well.

Keep your stick on the ice.

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