1. Welcome to SportsJournalists.com, a friendly forum for discussing all things sports and journalism.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register for a free account to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Access to private conversations with other members.
    • Fewer ads.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Twitter reactions not representative of public opinion

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Dick Whitman, Mar 5, 2013.

  1. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    Whoo hooo!

    I've been saying for years that reax stories about SOCIL MEDIA!!!111 are lazy journalism and a low-rent crutch.

    Oh, and apparently inaccurate, as well:


    As much as the media leans on Twitter as an instant public-opinion barometer, the microblogging site's users really aren't representative of the nation at large. ...

    [T]he most consistent bias that Pew found was not toward liberals or conservatives. It was a bias against, well, almost everything.
  2. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    Social media reaction stories are not inaccurate unless they are poorly labeled.
  3. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    Disagree. I think it is implied that they are at least reasonably representative of public opinion.
  4. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    We can't assume readers will figure out that people on Twitter are younger and more cynical than the general populace? None of this is breaking news.
  5. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    No, we can't. People read these stories and they, I would guess, assume that they are representative of public opinion. You're talking about the same general public that believes movie commercials are a good representation of critical response. I don't know how many times I've heard, "Supposedly it's getting great reviews" about a movie that got roundly torched. Why? Because the commercial cherry-picks reviewer quotes. And a lot of people don't get that.
  6. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    So should we continue to do the stories but put in disclaimers?
  7. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

    We should not do the stories.

    YGBFKM Guest

  9. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    But readers like those stories. Readers click and share those stories. Readers like to participate in those stories, then they share them even more if they are chosen to be part of those stories.

    And, yes, those stories provide easy secondary pieces for breaking news. Is that so wrong? It would be if we were ignoring the main story, the real reporting. But here's something that can be compiled by an online producer. And most of these stories pop up for inane events, not real news. (I'm including the state of the union and presidential debates in this category because they aren't actually important.) Your readers want Oscars coverage. Why be so uptight that you can't provide them with a slice of social media reaction? Pull a few witty quips and a few decent insights so that your readers don't have to go through thousands of tweets. It's a service.

    We have to be about more than reporting the news these days. We have to engage readers and provide service journalism. Otherwise we'll lose them to the places willing to give them what they want.
  10. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

  11. Versatile

    Versatile Active Member

    I said "most." And that's a story discussing the rise of Twitter in the context of a major news event, not using Twitter as a form of sourcing on the news event.
  12. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Well-Known Member

Draft saved Draft deleted

Share This Page