Digital Journalism Review

Digest: How can social media benefit journalists' work?

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 19 September, 2012, 3:58pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 19 September, 2012, 4:01pm

As a social media editor, part of my job is to share useful social media tools and skills with colleagues in the editorial department, hoping they can benefit from using these new approaches. So frankly speaking, I was a bit disappointed to learn that until now less than 40 per cent of UK journalists say that social media can inprove their productivity.

(You can check more details appeared in a report of a survey here or below.)

The key point the survey shows, from my point of view, is the positive impact that social media can bring to a journalist. It really depends on his/her role in the newsroom, and the time he/she spends on the new platforms.

Generally, the more newspaper reporters engage with their readers online, the more useful information they will get. It is quite similar to the old rule that journalists have been following for decades: keep in touch with your sources, because you will get ideas for stories from them.

The question “how can journalists benefit from using social media” should be changed to “what are the journalist’s position and what are his/her tasks?”. Until these two basic questions are answered, it will be difficult for journalists to find the right social media platforms to improve their work.


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