Top hashtags used by journalists on #journorequest

Dot Star Media technology monitors tweets posted to #journorequest and other related hashtags on Twitter. We identify which tweets are requests from journalists and send prompt alerts to subscribers – by email, Teams or Slack.

Frequency of hashtags appearing in journalist requests can give an indication of what subjects are in journalist minds.

Many themes are seasonal or recurring. Knowing what typically gets talked about through the course of a (normal) year can help with campaign planning.

Here’s a month-by-month look at top hashtags used by verified journalists over the last year or so.

May 2023

Looking at hashtags used by journalists on #journorequest in May 2023 we see artificial intelligence occupying minds with #ai appearing in multiple journalist requests this month. Other frequent hashtags seen in May 2023 media requests are #eurovision, #localelections2023 and #gardening and #holidays.

April 2023

In April 2023 the top two hashtags used by journalists on #journorequest were #ai and #coronation, followed by #travel and #juniordoctorstrike

March 2023

#internationalwomensday and #iwd2023 were frequent topics in March 2023. There were requests about the #budget. #costoflivingcrisis dropped out of the top hashtags used by journalists on #journorequest for the first month in seven months.

February 2023

#costoflivingcrisis was the top hashtag mentioned by journalists in February 2023 in their #journorequest posts. Journalists worked on story angles around how the cost of living crisis impacts the dating scene, living back at parents, socialising, and disabled people. Other common themes for February 2023 were #nhs and #valentinesday. Here’s a word cloud of the most frequent hashtags in the month.

January 2023

The top five hashtags mentioned by journalists in Jan 2023 on their #journorequest posts – #nhs, #parenting, #travel, #mentalhealth, #fashion. And #valentinesday was next on the list. We spotted some useful thoughts from fashion writer Laura Craik on PR pitches hooked around Valentine’s Day in a recent Roxhill RoxStars newsletter.

December 2022

In December 2022, besides #christmas, judging by the content of #journorequest (and related hashtags) on Twitter, the media turned its attention to #travel. Unfortunately #costofliving / #costoflivingcrisis topics continue, with 1970s style industrial relations topics emerging as new trends – #railstrikes appeared in our top hashtag word cloud roundup for the first time.

November 2022

Top hashtag in November 2022 was #christmas followed by #travel. There were a handful of popular hashtags around the football World Cup. As winter begins to bite, #costofliving and #costofliving crisis are topics that remain on the minds of journalists.

October 2022

For the third month running #CostOfLivingCrisis was the most frequent hashtag used by journalists posting journalist requests to #JournoRequest (and related hashtags) on Twitter. Related to cost of living issues are call-outs for data and case studies on the consequences of increasing #mortgage costs. Journalists looking for #Christmas related content is standard seasonal fare for October.

September 2022

#costoflivingcrisis and related hashtags, like #mortgage continue to be front of mind for journalists posting requests in September 2022.

August 2022

#costofliving, #costoflivingcrisis and #energycrisis were frequent topics on Twitter’s #journorequest in August 2022

July 2022

In July 2022 the dominant themes indicated by hashtags used by journalists posting requests to #journorequest were sport with #euro2022 #lionessess and #commonwealthgames2022 prominent. Travel chaos that occurred at Dover (#dover and #doverchaos) at the start of most school summer holidays, and in the entertainment – again, #loveisland

June 2022

June 2022 saw requests looking for comment on the impact of rail workers strikes. We also had the annual Pride month and the much anticipated return of Glastonbury festival generating media requests.

May 2022

Based on hashtag analysis of journalist requests the Cost of Living crisis was a dominant theme for May 2022. The #platinumjubilee is a less than once-in-a lifetime event and is getting plenty of journalists requesting contributions around jubilee themed events and activities.

April 2022

Cost of living crisis and the HRT shortage emerged as topics in April 2022.

March 2022

February 2022

January 2022

Seasonal themes around Travel, and Valentines Day.

December 2021

Covid and Omicron were unwanted themes in December with NHS and Mental Health featuring regularly as related topics.

November 2021

November sees Black Friday which is an annual event in the UK now, usually occurring on the fourth Friday in November.

October 2021

October 2021 saw the COP26 climate conference, with Christmas and Travel themes also strong.

September 2021

In the early Autumn the data from #journorequest shows journalists turning their attention to Christmas stories, with product reviews, gift guides and Christmas stories.

Journalists sticking around on Twitter

One of the most popular hashtags on Twitter for journalists is #journorequest, which – as readers here will know – allows journalists to find sources, experts, or stories for their articles. But has the use of this hashtag changed since Elon Musk took over Twitter in October 2022?

We analysed the data and found that the number of journalists using #journorequest has remained broadly stable since the Musk acquisition.

The chart below shows the monthly count of individual journalists using #journorequest from April 2022 to March 2023. There is no significant increase or decrease in the trend, despite all the controversial changes that Musk has introduced to the platform.

This suggests that journalists are continuing to find value in using #journorequest on Twitter to connect with potential sources and stories.

At Dot Star Media we monitor the #journorequest hashtag 24/7 for journalist requests, and send alerts to subscribers for relevant opportunities – helping people respond to journalists promptly and win media coverage. Journalists can also submit requests to our network of public relations professionals, charities, businesses and academic institutions through our free journalist enquiry form.

Responding to media requests – the basics

What is a media request?

Journalists writing stories often search for insights, remarks, or interviews from organisations in the sector they are covering. Many journalists post these requests on social media, forums, or specialised platforms.  These requests are referred to as media requests, or journalist enquiries. Responding to media requests can be a swift and simple way to get your organisation highlighted in the media.

Media request alerts in an email client inbox

Who do journalists want to hear from?

All sorts. The kind of organisations journalists seek information from is varied and includes businesses, academia, think-tanks, individual experts, authorities and charities. The actual information or comment sought very much depends on the story.

Who can respond to a media request?

Anyone who can genuinely help a journalist with their story can respond to media requests. In practice many organisations find that hiring a PR agency, who are experts in reviewing and responding to media requests, works well. Business owners can also receive and respond to journalist enquiries directly. Either way, responding to media requests is an established and effective way to earn print and online media coverage in newspapers, consumer magazines and trade titles.

How to respond to media requests?

When responding to media requests it helps if you put yourself in the journalist’s shoes and consider the audience that they are writing for. These tips make it easier for a journalist to work with you:

Be relevant:
Journalists frequently complain about off-topic pitches. Read the request carefully – we suggest reading it twice – then make sure your response is relevant to the journalist’s request.

Be prompt:
Journalists often have tight deadlines. Responding fast builds trust and establishes you as a reliable source. Being quick gives you a better chance of winning media coverage in a competitive field.

Be transparent:
Be open about who you are, who you represent, and what information you can provide. Be clear about any limitations or restrictions on what you can share.

Be concise:
It’s ok, and respectful, to keep your initial response short and to the point. If a journalist needs more information from a source, they will ask for it.

Be responsive:
Make sure you are available to answer any follow-up questions or provide additional information if needed. Provide a phone number as well as email contact details.

Follow these tips and you’ll improve your chances of securing some media coverage.

Dot Star Media provides a media request service connecting journalists with businesses, academia and charities.

Businesses and public relations people looking to receive journalist enquiries are welcome to try the Dot Star Media journalist enquiry service – see

Journalists can send media requests to a wide range of business, PR, charity and academic sources using this journalist enquiry form. Dot Star Media also monitors Twitter for journalist requests and alerts its network to relevant journalist enquiries. More information on how it works here:

A robot invasion

How can journalists survive the AI invasion?

Do journalists need to worry about Artificial Intelligence (AI) generated content taking their jobs? Here are five areas that journalists can excel at and where AI generated content is poor.

In-depth and investigative reporting
AI content is typically designed to generate basic information or summaries, like this blog post. AI is not well-suited to complex or investigative reporting. By focusing on these areas, journalists can provide value and expertise that AI content cannot match.

Providing human perspective and analysis
AI content is not capable of providing the human perspective or analysis that is unique to journalists. By highlighting their personal experiences and insights, journalists can differentiate themselves from AI content and provide value to their readers.

Using multimedia and interactive formats
AI content is typically limited to text-based formats. Journalists can use multimedia and interactive formats to create engaging and immersive experiences that AI content cannot match.

Having a personal brand
In a world where information is easily accessible, journalists can differentiate themselves by building a personal brand and audience. A loyal and engaged following is less likely to be swayed by AI content.

Collaborating with experts
AI content is limited by the data and information it has been trained on. Journalists can collaborate with experts to provide a more comprehensive, accurate and current view of the world. The Dot Star Media journalist enquiry service can help journalists find expert sources from businesses, charities and universities.

diagram showing how the journalist enquiry service works

Why businesses should be responding to journalist enquiries, by ChatGPT

Like many, I spent some time this weekend playing with ChatGPT and being amazed by its ability to spit out passable ‘content’ on pretty much any subject. Taking the area that Dot Star Media operates in I asked ChatGPT for five reasons why businesses should be responding to journalist enquiries, or media requests, found on Twitter.

It came up with these reasons – all wrapped in the robotic ChatGPT style:

1. To maintain positive relationships with the media.
2. To influencing the narrative around their brand.
3. To help build trust with customers and stakeholders
4. To stay informed, and ‘keep their fingers on the pulse’.
5. To take advantage of opportunities to showcase products, services and expertise.

It’s not a bad list.

5 reasons businesses should respond to journalist requests, by ChatGPT

The temptation for using AI to mass produce content for SEO purposes is obvious. Indeed, I used AI generated content to support this blog post. But, where will all this lead? One can imagine the web becoming stuffed (more than it already is) with bland AI generated content.

OpenAI assures us that as a Large Language Model (LLM) it can’t actually generate anything original.

If LLM training data itself draws upon AI generated content is there a risk we end up with an ever-worsening web of self-reflecting, endlessly mirrored, AI generated content?

In a world of SEOs and marketers using AI generated content to boost rankings, search engines will want to distinguish derivative AI generated content from the genuinely original content that was created by humans.

OpenAI ‘thinks’ that doing this will be tricky, especially as machine generated text can be ‘humanised’ by a real-living editor.

In a positive note, Paul Graham suggests that in a sea of mediocrity, the “price” of good writing could go up.

There may be parallels here with artisan or organic food. Artisan produce commands a premium price and is available in fewer locations. Maybe we’ll have a class of ‘artisan writing’ for work that’s been lovingly produced by organic humans. Troublingly, artisan food is out of reach to those who can’t afford it. Maybe we’ll see similar barriers emerging for expensively produced human content. Expect more and higher paywalls around the most exclusive and highest quality original content.

Whatever the future brings, Dot Star Media is here to support human journalists. Our journalist enquiry service connects journalists with thousands of human contributors – who are ready and waiting to support journalists do their work creating fresh and original writing.

Getting your journalist requests in Slack

Dot Star Media ‘gold’ tier customers can receive their journalist request notifications in Slack.

Having your journalist requests sent to a Slack channel might work better than email alerts for a couple of reasons: Delivery to Slack is quicker than email and it’s easier for your team to collaborate on the best way to respond to a request.

How to setup Slack for Dot Star Media journalist requests

First of all, decide where you want to see your journalist request alerts. From the Slack desktop application or website choose an existing channel, or create a new Slack channel.

Next, give your new channel a name and description and press the ‘create’ button. You can invite colleagues to the Slack channel that will receive journalist requests now, or later on.

Once your new channel exists the next step is to create a Slack app. Visit and press the ‘create new app’ button.

Choose the Create an app ‘From scratch’ option

Your new app will need a name. In this example I called our app ‘Dot Star Media alerts’. Then pick the workspace that contains your channel for receiving journalists requests. Press the ‘Create App’ button.

On the next page, called ‘Building Apps for Slack’, select ‘Incoming Webhooks’

Then, if not already activated, switch the ‘Activate Incoming Webhooks’ to ‘On’. Depending on how you are currently using Slack in your organisation, this may already be selected.

The next step is to press ‘Add New Webhook to Workspace’

Choose which channel to send journalist request alerts to, and press ‘allow’.

You’ll then be taken to a page that provides you with your new Webhook URL. Copy the Webhook URL to your clipboard and head over to the Dot Star Media website

On the Dot Star Media website, from the navigation menu, click ‘Organisation’ and then ‘Configure channels’

This will open the ‘Distribution Channels’ page. Check the ‘Slack webhook enabled’ check box and paste in the Webhook URL from your Slack app into the webhook url box and Save Settings.

And now, your journalist request alerts should feed into your Slack channel as they happen.

There are quite a few steps here. Please contact us for support as required.

Keeping track of Journalist Job Moves

When starting on a new job, or patch, journalists often invite suggestions for stories to cover. This makes the moment that a journalist takes on a new role an opportune time to pitch. To help public relations people track journalist job changes we’re maintaining and sharing a collection of journalist ‘job move’ tweets.

If you find journalist job move information useful you can bookmark the journalist job moves page or you can monitor the curated job move timeline directly on Twitter.

Journalist request filtering – keep it simple.

Many subscribers are successfully using our keyword filtering system to receive fewer, more relevant journalist request alerts. Sometimes we see fairly complex phrases, of three, four or more words being used in subscriber keyword lists. These more complex phrases are unlikely to match what journalists write in their requests – and so will return few matches.

To provide guidance when entering keywords we’ve added a contextual warning banner that pops up when a complex keyword is entered.

Some related posts on keyword filtering of journalist requests

We’re happy to provide support on using keyword filters to improve your journalist request feed results – so please contact us.

First Birthday Review

The Dot Star Media journalist request service is one year old. We’re proud to have helped journalists find sources and subscribers earn media coverage. Over 1,000 media relations professionals at PR agencies, businesses, charities, and universities are receiving journalist requests via Dot Star Media. Here are some testimonials.

We’ve enjoyed bringing innovation into the journalist request space. Here’s a round-up of some of the developments from our first year.

Super fast automated #journorequest alerts (Jan 2021)

Speed of journalist request alert delivery matters. Busy journalists with looming deadlines will often go with the first (good) responses they receive. Thanks to automated text scanning and classification of journalist requests most of the alerts we distribute are received by subscribers within seconds of being posted. This gives Dot Star Media customers an advantage in responding quickly.

Super-fast journalist requests

Journalist requests in Microsoft Teams, or Slack (Jan 2021)

Some subscribers use Slack or Teams to manage workflow. Depending on how your organisation operates, receiving media request notifications in a Slack or Teams channel can offer some advantages over receiving alerts by email: delivery to Slack is quicker than email and it’s easier for your team to collaborate on the best way to respond to a request.

Journalist request keyword filtering (Jan 2021)

Keyword filtering means that niche businesses and single issue campaigning organisations can receive relevant journalist requests without being distracted by alerts that are irrelevant to them. Keyword filtering of requests benefits journalists too because it means a wider pool of sources find value in monitoring journalist requests.

Journalist request keyword filtering

Journalist request digests (March 2021)

In March 2021 we added Journalist Enquiry Digests. These emails group requests – still filtered by topics and keywords – into a single periodic alerts sent at pre-determined intervals. Digests alerts look like this:

Journalist request digests

Artificial intelligence keyword suggestions (April 2021)

What sort of tech company would we be without using a bit of AI?  When entering keywords for keyword filtering, we’re using a Semantic Network Robot for finding words that are related to the original keyword. This is useful for building a keyword list because it’s quite hard to predict what words a journalist will use in their requests.

Keyword suggestions

Journalist request submit form (May 2021)

In May 2021 we added a journalist request submission form for journalists. This means we can support journalists who want to send more detailed briefs than Twitter allows or prefer to avoid the public nature of social media.

Block individual senders (Jun 2021)

For those that monitor #journorequest on Twitter the ‘mute’ option is useful for hiding Tweets from twitter handles that are not relevant to their work. We’ve added similar functionality to Dot Star Media journalist request alerts. It’s easy to exclude any individual sender from an alert feed.

Journalist request sender filter

Enquiry search (June 2021)

Sometimes it helps to look back. The enquiry search page provides a keyword search of historic journalist requests. If you want to find a list of journalists who have recently requested input on a particular subject, enquiry search can help.

Journalist request enquiry Search

See the effect of keyword filters (Aug 2021)

This development came out of a conversation with a customer who wanted to toggle their filters on and off. The customer wanted to which requests their keyword filters were removing from their feed, and to scan the unfiltered request stream for possible new keyword filters to add.

Toggle Keyword Filtering

Filter requests by number of followers (Aug 2021)

The journalist follower threshold allows a subscriber to filter journalist request alerts based on the number of followers a journalist has.

Filter requests by follower count

Advanced filtering with word boundaries (Sep 2021)

For more precision on keyword filtering we enabled regular expressions on the filters. In the image below the word ‘ai’ is given a word boundary, performing a whole word search. This stops alerts on ‘airport’, but continues to alert on ‘AI’. Occasionally very useful.

Advanced journalist request filtering

See a journalist’s previous requests (Oct 2021)

We added a page that gathers together an individual journalist’s previous requests. Looking through earlier requests helps in understanding a journalist’s style and the subjects they have previously covered.

Previous journalist requests

Recent article links on journalist request alerts (Dec 2021)

We improved the journalist information links section on journalist request alerts with the addition of links to Muck Rack ‘recent articles’ pages.

Journalist information links

Sending and receiving journalist requests

Journalists can submit requests at There is no charge to submit a request.

To receive journalist requests please register for a two-week free trial at

Recent article links on journalist request alerts

We’re including links in our journalist request alerts to journalists’ recent article pages on Muck Rack. Reviewing a journalists’ recent articles can provide information on their typical content and writing style. Familiarity with a journalist’s work can help when tailoring a pitch. For example, you might be able to see how a journalist has used quotes from spokespeople, or the way in which brands have been mentioned, or if the outlet the journalist is writing for has provided outbound links.

Recent article links on alert emails

You’ll find the links to recent articles in the ‘Links’ section on the journalist request email alert. Recent article links also appear in the Slack and Microsoft Teams journalist request alerts.

After reviewing a few possible options we decided to link to Muck Rack’s public journalist profiles because they provide recent article coverage for most of the UK and Irish journalists who are posting journalist requests.

Journalist request: information links

Most Dot Star Media journalist request alerts include four ‘additional information’ links.

There is sometimes a fifth link, as we research and add links to journalists own websites and portfolio pages.

Would you like to try Dot Star Media?

To receive Dot Star Media journalist requests for yourself please register for a two-week free trial at

Journalists can submit media requests at