I can just see the look now on journalist’s faces if you told them ten years ago part of their job would include “tweeting”. They probably would have thought you were off your rocker. But low and behold, today there is a nest full of benefits for the journalists who have embraced the act that is “tweeting”.
Why Twitter for journalism? There are few factors that make Twitter a handy tool in the journalists arsenal, such as ease. Twitter is very simple to use and very user friendly. There are 140 characters to say what you need to say, which can include links and pictures. So not only is Twitter simple, but it’s to the point.
Pairing nicely with its ease of use, Twitter is becoming the go to tool for breaking news. Not only can journalists reach their followers quickly with breaking news, or any information, but the rate at which followers receive this news is astounding it it’s own right. Such as when a 5.9 earthquake rocked Richmond, Virginia and the people of New York read about it on Twitter 30 seconds before they even felt it. This is an amazing feat for technology, as well as the ability to report at the drop of a hat.
Twitter also harnesses the power of being a social network by not only reaching out to the people, but also having them reach out in return with a response. Twitter allows you to reach a large audience and be able to complete tasks such as surveys. Sending a question out to followers and responses are returned directly to you. This power can be harnessed in multiple ways on the journalism platform to appeal to your audience and still be personable.
Twitter has become a tool for journalist’s in the few ways listed, and is sure to grow and develop with the trade. Ultimately Twitter and journalism are an ideal combination that share similar objectives: brevity, clarity and immediacy.