In 2015, it was Patricia Arquette advocating equal pay. In 2016, it was #OscarsSoWhite. Last year it was the envelope snafu. What will be the most buzzed about moment at tonight’s Oscars? Whatever news the 90th Academy Awards ceremony makes, the editors on The New York Times’s social media team stand ready to spot it and share it.

Dozens of Times reporters, editors and photographers will be covering different aspects of the biggest awards show of the year. One part of the social team’s work is to pull all that reporting together. Using Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, the team begins coverage just before the red carpet entrances at 5 p.m. Eastern and works until the end of the show, typically around 11 p.m. Each platform serves as a home for different mediums, depending on timeliness: Twitter for live breaking news, Facebook for comprehensive coverage and Instagram for photography. The Styles, Culture, video and photography departments all collaborate to complete a full report. “Nobody has our Styles expertise, our cinematic expertise, and in this case our political and investigative reporting expertise,” said Cynthia Collins, The Times’s editor for social media and community. “So all of these forces are coming together to make the Times be this essential resource for all things Oscars.”

Before the carpet is even laid down, Michael Gold, a social strategy editor, begins combing archives from across the newsroom for related coverage to the films. Social media language is often prepared days in advance.

Those posts help locate the Oscars inside the constellation of The Times’s politics and culture reporting. “We just have a lot of great reporting on most of these nominees that we can resurface and push out there,” Mr. Gold said. “It adds extra context.” The team will share reviews of nominated films, for instance, or a critic’s take on a nominated song. They even have explainers for jokes ready, for when a host’s esoteric punch line leaves viewers scratching their heads at home.

The reporters Cara Buckley and Brooks Barnes will have live Twitter feeds on the ground. (Meanwhile, the reporters Jodi Kantor, Meghan Twohey and Emily Steel, who broke stories about widespread sexual harassment allegations and intimidation tactics in the media and entertainment industries, will be inside the auditorium at Dolby Theater.)

In the newsroom, a war room of sorts will be set up, with more than 30 people assigned to various tasks. The social media team acts as a kind of journalistic front line — scouring various platforms for anything newsworthy from celebrities as they get ready for the main event. The model and TV host Chrissy Teigen, for example, always provides great material, Mr. Gold said. Others on the team like Eleanor Stanford, a staff editor for Watching, the Times’s viewing guide for film and TV, will help point readers to Times coverage of nominated films they might have seen and where to stream movies starring a particular nominee.

There will also be staffers on hand simply to transcribe sound bites. “Someone’s acceptance speech can be one of the biggest lines of the night,” Ms. Collins said. “People don’t want our take, they just want to know what was said.”

Showstoppers might not be confined to the stage, as was the case at the Golden Globes, when Debra Messing was interviewed by E! reporters, only to criticize the network for its pay disparity between men and women.

“I’m still not over that moment,” said Bonnie Wertheim, a staff editor in Styles who will be posting from the department’s Twitter account.

“We spend a lot of time transcribing quotes now because at least from what we’ve seen on previous red carpets, there tends to be more substantive conversation,” Ms. Wertheim said. Even if the game hasn’t changed for good, these live events allow The Times, she explained, “to have a conversation with our audience that we don’t usually get to.”


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