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Majority of Journalists Use Social Media for Research

2010 February 15

A US survey conducted by Cision and Don Bates, founding director of George Washington University’s Master’s Degree Program in Strategic Public Relations found that an overwhelming majority of reporters and editors depend on social media  when researching their stories.

Check out these statistics:

  • 89% said they turn to blogs for story research
  • 65% to social media sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn
  • 52% to microblogging services such as Twitter.
  • 61% use Wikipedia, the popular online encyclopedia.

While the majority of journalists use Social Media for research, they also understand the need to verify the information they get from Social Media.

  • 84% percent said social media sources were “slightly less” or “much less” reliable than traditional media
  • 49% saying social media suffers from “lack of fact checking, verification and reporting standards.”

While I agree with the need to verify information, I don’t blame Social Media for this lack of reliability.  As with any journalistic research, reporters (and bloggers etc) need to consider the source.

Click here for a free copy of the Cision Study on the use of Social Media by Journalists.

In this video, posted to You Tube by Jamie Hong, Frank Witsil, Web Producer of The Detroit Free Press and Mary C. Curtis, commentator of the Fox News Rising morning show in Charlotte, N.C. speak on the future of journalism and social media.

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