Sign Up for Alerts

A traffic/accident alert from the state's Department of Transportation via a screen shot on my Samsung GS4

A traffic/accident alert from the state’s Department of Transportation via a screen shot on my Samsung GS4

I receive a lot of alerts and I want it that way.

I have a pretty bad memory,  so when it comes to most things, I need reminders

Alerts aren’t just there to remind me, though. They are there to let me know about certain events that I otherwise wouldn’t know about.

To be honest, I have no idea how many different kinds of alerts I get. They range from normal breaking news alerts from the other media outlets in the state to when new requests for proposals (RFPs) are released in one of my towns.

I cannot emphasize enough how important alerts are. For me, they’ve saved my butt a few times. The DOT traffic/accident alerts are great because, sometimes, I’ll be able to get a heads up on an accident story that I’ll have to write before I head into work.

I mean, what’s better than being first to a scene or incident? When you think about it, having this edge is almost priceless. All it takes is for a reporter to sign up for these alerts and you are giving yourself advantages that other reporters aren’t. It puts you on another level, I feel.

The most important alert I ever received, so far, was June 25 of this year.

I was about to head home, when I got an alert from WFSB Channel 3 and it told me an officer had been shot off of South Street in Willimantic. Without that alert, I wouldn’t have had 1/2 the coverage I had from that day. I wouldn’t have gotten to the scene so early and I wouldn’t have been able to talk to so many neighbors.

If you are on the fence about signing up for alerts, let that story be the lone reason why you should. It’s an important reminder of how quickly you can miss things.

I hate missing things, as, I’m sure, all reporters do. Had I just gone home that day, without getting the alert, I would have really been beyond mad at myself. I wouldn’t have let it go. Thankfully, I don’t have to worry about that.

Alerts can be annoying, I know, but they payoff big in the end. They’ll help you more than you may be thinking. Whether it’s my story, or one that you may encounter in your endeavors, I really think it’s more than a good idea to get alerts.

Just make sure to have unlimited texting. I highly suggest you get that before you do anything because, it could come back to hurt your pockets.



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