Our appetite for news has changed greatly over the last century. In the past, you would have had to wait for the late edition or morning newspaper for in-depth analysis of what was going on, while breaking news was only experienced if you were tuned into the TV or Radio. Now, all it takes if for someone with a Twitter account to break a story before the whole world finds out what’s going on. Twitter is an excellent mass communication tool, but it also has its flaws.
An important source for worldwide breaking news
Twitter has been instrumental in letting people know about major events as they happen. Recent terror attacks, hurricane alerts and even deaths of famous figures have all been broken via Twitter - changing the way we find out about the things that impact our lives. With Twitter, people can become micro-journalists who share photographs, video, and snippets of information that can help alert people to what’s going on without having to wait for a news outlet to cover it. It’s also a place where citizen journalists can react to events and share links to their own insights and articles (like BrooWaha’s own latest news pages), offering a wide range of views on subjects and international perspectives.
News outlets are also using Twitter to their advantage by posting updates on the latest stories, putting links in place for further information as events unfold.
Credibility and the rise of fake news
Unlike a news page populated by journalists who follow certain ethical codes, no such rules apply when it comes to Twitter. The sheer volume of fake news can have a detrimental effect on people’s perceptions - particularly those who only grab the headlines before moving on to other things. The recent shooting in Las Vegas is one example of how fake news can be dangerously spread through Twitter, and it’s up to real news outlets to wade through the mud to tell the real story. While Twitter might be a good place to be alerted, it’s the main news outlets that are still the places to get the full story.
Avoiding being caught up in the news fire
With breaking news spreading quickly on Twitter, it can be difficult to identify what’s true and what isn’t. One way you can resolve this is to make a list of news sources that you know are credible so that when the Twitter outbreak happens, you’ll be able to navigate to sources you can trust. Your favorite news outlets will all have Twitter accounts for breaking news, while influential names like Clayton Swisher are good for more in-depth news and investigation. Take everything at face value until it’s confirmed by someone you trust and don’t fuel the fire by retweeting sources who may not be speaking the truth.
As a tool for instant communication on a worldwide level, Twitter is most certainly leading the way. While the credibility of posts is something that needs to be taken into consideration, there’s no reason why Twitter shouldn’t be your main source for breaking news. With the platform already trialing doubling the length of its 140-character count, we could see some exciting developments in the world of Twitter news to make it an even more powerful news source in the future.