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Editor's note: Kent Collins, faculty chair of Radio-Television Journalism at the University of Missouri School of Journalism and a 2012-2013 RJI Fellow, coached the KOMU-TV team during the creation and production of Town Square. 

Columbia, Mo., NBC affiliate KOMU says it’s using social media to help produce its public affairs show.

Four times over seven months, the station inserted a public affairs show called Town Square into its Noon newscast by shortening the news and weather segments without altering program logs or commercial schedules. The content was made up of topics farmed through a social media campaign that began a few months before the shows aired.

“We’ve learned to really embrace the use of social media, not just as a place where you put your story when it’s done but the place where your story can start,” Annie Hammock, interactive director at KOMU told RJI Online.

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