How to become a Twitter curator: Melina's story

Meet Melina, 25, from London, a Twitter Moments curator. Part of our Bitesize world of work series.

Melina at work, smiling.
"I wanted to highlight voices that aren’t always heard, and talk about shared experiences across the world."

What is your job?

We highlight the best of what’s happening on Twitter by identifying the biggest conversations in real time, or the biggest real world events taking place at this moment.

What are your day-to-day tasks?

We scan through tweets and the amazing conversations that take place. We also identify emerging trends, creating a collection of tweets. We all work at different times – some of us early in the morning, some later in the day. Our daily work depends on what is happening at that given time. We aim to give people timely information every time they open their app.

What skills do you use in your job?

Storytelling skills, because a lot of the Moments we do are quite narrative-driven. I trained to be a journalist, so a lot of the skills that I developed whilst training come into play here. News-gathering skills and verification skills are important – we need to be sure that what we are showing you is accurate.

We must also understand the different communities that exist on Twitter, so we need to be careful when we are trying to summarise these big stories.

Time management is also important. I specialise in breaking news, so everything I do has to be very timely and accurate. You have to be a good communicator and team player as we work with colleagues across the globe.

What subjects did you study at school?

I got nine GCSEs, then I got three A-levels and one AS-level – I did English Literature, History, Sociology and Psychology. I studied History and, after that, I went to journalism school and completed an NCJT course (National Council of the Training of Journalists) in order to become a qualified self-starting journalist.

Was it a smooth ride?

Not always – I found I needed to do a lot of self-teaching to learn all the things I wanted to at school. I also had to learn to overcome feelings that I might not be good enough. I’m so glad I didn't give up.

Melina standing next to the Twitter logo at work.
Melina standing next to the Twitter logo at work.

Top tips

  • Don’t be scared if you’re not 100% sure what you want to do, it’s ok. This is the stage in your life you can try out things. It's all about trial and error

  • It's better to know what you don't want to do at this stage

  • If you do have an interest or hobby, pursue it and see if you can turn it into a job or lifelong interest. Research as much as you can

  • If you're interested in content curation, use social media to your advantage. Contact people if you have an interest in their roles, put forward creative ideas or ask for their advice. The world is your oyster

  • At Twitter we had a one tweet CV initiative where young people could send in a tweet and, if they were suitable, come in and experience life at Twitter. Look out for similar opportunities!

What to expect if you want to be a web content editor

A similar role to a Twitter Moments curator is a web content editor. Web content editors research, write and manage an organisation’s online content, including text, images, video and other media.

  • Web content editor salary: £19,760 to £65,000
  • Web content editor working hours: 35 to 40 hours. You could work evenings occasionally.
  • Typical entry requirements: You can get into this job through a university course, a college course, an apprenticeship or in-work training. You may have an advantage if you do a degree in Journalism, English, Digital Media or Marketing. Other degree subjects will be acceptable to employers, as long as you've got an excellent standard of written English. You’ll usually need two to three A-levels (or equivalent) for a degree. You could take a college course to get some of the skills you'll need when looking for a job. Courses include A-level (or equivalent) English, a Level 3 Diploma in Creative and Digital Media, or a Level 3 Diploma in Digital Marketing. You may need four or five GCSEs (or equivalent) at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) for a Level 3 course.

This information is a guide (sources: LMI for All, National Careers Service)

Melina found her internship through Creative Access, an organisation that helps black, Asian and minority ethnic young people, and people from lower socio-economic backgrounds, get into work in the creative industries.

For careers advice in all parts of the UK visit: England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales

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