BBC Broadcasting House

BBC News is running a live Twitter Q&A with journalist Ian Pannell later today, who recently returned from reporting in Syria.

In the live Twitter chat, the first of its kind for BBC News, Pannell will answer questions on his experience of reporting from the country which CNN's Arwa Damon described as "one of the most frustrating, difficult and challenging stories to cover".

The Q&A will run for an hour from 5pm (BST) today (Friday, 3 August) and questions can be submitted via Twitter to #BBC_HaveYourSay using the hashtag #AskBBCIan. Other ways users can submit questions include via a web form or by texting the question starting with #AskBBCIan to 61124 in the UK or +44 7624 800 100 outside the UK.

"When it's over, we'll collect together all the questions and answers and publish them here," the BBC adds in a post about the Q&A.

In a statement to social media editor for BBC News Chris Hamilton added: "This is a great way of allowing our audience to find out more about a very important story, and more about how we cover it, directly from one of our frontline reporters.

"We use a variety of ways to involve our audiences across BBC News, whether it's live phone-ins, website comments, audience-suggested stories and user generated content. But using Twitter in this way, with a correspondent just returned from a war zone from where he did some incredibly powerful reporting, is new for us - making the most of it as an easy-to-use, live conversation platform - whilst allowing anyone to take part, whether they use Twitter or not."

A number of media outlets have hosted live Q&A chats as a way of connecting their audience to interviewees, and leading political figures from Boris Johnson to Barack Obama have also used the social network to answer questions from the public.

The BBC's College of Production has also used Twitter to run live Q&A workshops where users can get their "questions answered by some of the broadcast industry’s most accomplished practitioners, offering one-to-one advice, tips and inspiration, live on Twitter over lunch."

Back in 2011 Twitter outlined some tips how how best to run a Q&A session on the network.

Free daily newsletter

If you like our news and feature articles, you can sign up to receive our free daily (Mon-Fri) email newsletter (mobile friendly).