Tag Archives: youtube

Impact of Social Media on Journalism

Over twenty emails and several tweets- I was beginning to loose hope that any journalists were going to find time in their busy schedules to reply back to my enquires. My assigned research entailed contacting credible journalistic sources to feature in my article titled ‘Has Social Media Plagued Journalism For Good?’. So, you can imagine the excitement of seeing an email from the editor of Dorset Life magazine outlining his views on the topic:

Joel Lacey, of Dorset Life, explained how he thought social media has been “both a boon and a bane for professional journalists”. It is advantageous in terms of the helpfulness of user-generated content from Citizen Journalists. If there were, for example, a photograph or video footage of an event it is much easier to acquire than it may well have been. On YouTube there is a channel dedicated to this, ‘Citizen Tube’, there is raw footage of the Libyan crisis and Japanese earthquake. This makes journalists jobs slightly easier and also acts as a database for public use.

Videos uploaded by YOU

On the other hand, Lacey discusses how “much of what is being put out is essentially gossip: repeated or invented material”. This is noticeably a danger zone, as the huge source of information online means sifting through and deeming what is and what is not credible. Admittedly, Lacey says that he has used social media as a starting point to some of his articles for Dorset Life. However, he approaches these stories with caution and they still require sufficient research through conducting  interviews and involving other sources.

Still locating primary sources for my research, I contacted other local journalists, as it seemed this is where my research had led me so far. Stephen Bailey who writes for the Daily Echo had some useful insights to contribute with a focus on Twitter:

“I have found Twitter primarily useful for news planning” Bailey said and describes the time when he extracted a story from tweets about the 20th Armored Brigade going to Afghanistan. Agreeing with Lacey, he reinforces Twitter and other sites being useful for photojournalism. Aside from its conveniences and immediacy, Bailey appreciates letters as a form of communication as they are now becoming a rarity in the industry. Events like going to court, covering public meetings and meeting contacts are proactive ways that Bailey feels are the most enjoyable part of his job.

“I find the general belief that anyone can be a writer phenomenally dangerous” Lacey expresses his concerns of Citizen Journalism will make it harder for the professionals to earn a living. Though, I believe that print and broadcast journalism will co-exist with any online material that proceeds to invade the publishing world.

Stephen Jio from Dell has a discusses the effect of Citizen Journalism with students at City University:

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‘Bieber fever’ unnecessary hype

I doubt I am the only Bieber hater, but the 12 year-old, sorry, 16-year-old ‘pop-star’ has caused absolute mayhem with herds of tweens following the release of his movie Never Say Never. The film is needlessly shot in 3D, which attempts to pursue the same successions as other movies that have thrived on the 3D trend. It features him in all his glory, showing footage of his 2010 tour. Reviewers (of course I refuse to ever see the film myself) who are not crazy about the singer have taken more of a disliking to him. This all leads to the same question…what is with the hype?

Infamous Bieber pose at the London film premiere

This week Bieber has graced the UK with his presence to promote the new release and had thousands of girls screaming and crying to meet him. In the short space of 18 months, I have to hand it to the kid, he has shot to success. Boasting a staggering 21 million friends on Facebook, 7.3 million followers on Twitter, the most watched videos on YouTube and his name being one of the most searched for on Google he has not done bad at all. Fans of the star even call themselves ‘Bieblers’ and they seem to love the fact that he is all over social media.

The power of social media has helped Bieber’s extended 15 minutes of fame, but it won’t be long until he is surpassed by a younger and much more talented kid on the scene. Jaden and Willow Smith, although with a little help from their legendary father, have already covered acting, singing, songwriting, rapping and dancing collectively at the ages of 12 and 10. Other young talents, such as 10-year-old Heather Russell have been spotted on YouTube and taken on by the Cowell management. Russell begun performing at the age of eight, listing renown names Prince and Queen as her influences. The YouTube clip of her song ‘Every Step of the Way’ attracted more than 100,000 views and received recognition from celebrity couple Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore who have constantly tweeted about her.

Now this is talent worth the hype. Will Heather Russell be the new deserving contender for Bieber?

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Timeline: social networking sites

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Social barrier or freedom?

 Social Networking sites are websites which allow people to build social networks with others who share the same interests/activities or even to maintain relationships with existing friends.

Although social networking sites are ever changing the concept stays the same; interactivity is what all of the web-based sites provide, making contact easier through e-mail and instant messenger.

Well-known sites such as; Facebook and Myspace are more general based , however there are countless variations which sometimes seek to target niche audiences, focusing on interests such as dating, music, film etc.

1997: Launch of the first social networking site SixDegrees.com, it allows users to connect and send messages to each other. However, its success was somewhat short lived as 2000 saw the website close. 

1999: Social networking became popular and then used as a way to target niche groups and subcultures; AsianAvenue, BlackPlanet and LiveJournal to name a few.

 2000: LunarStorm is relaunched and MiGente introduced bringing an online community of Hispanics together. In 2008 the founder of AsianAvenue and BlackPlanet bought MiGente and claims over 23 million users.

2001: South Korea was the next to jump on the bandwagon with Cyworld, which followed the general guidelines of a social networking site, however it was the first to introduce the idea that profit came from the sale of virtual goods. Recently, the US version of the site has been closed down until furthur notice. Ryze.com another site lauched in this period targeted at business professionals and new entrepreneurs.

 2002: Friendster was founded by a Ryze member, with a popular Asian uptake it receives 19 billion page views per month. Fotolog is self-explanatory being an online photo blog and receiving 750 million page views a month.

 2003: Several websites were launched; Hi 5 and MySpace being the most well-known. Hi 5 claims to have over 60 million active users and in 2008 was voted the third most popular social networking site. MySpace on the other hand had its popularity streak in 2006, until overtaken by Facebook in 2008. It had 1000 employees and asserts over 200 million users.

A typical Facebook profile

2004: OrKut, Dogster, Multiply, aSmallWorld, Catster, Hyves are a few that were lauched in 2004 that were less mainstream. However, 2004 saw the introduction of Facebook but it was only available to Harvard students then it began to develop so it became accessible to other students, until it became worldwide to anyone over the age of 13.

 2005: Re-launches of sites that introduced new networking features came about, for example; Yahoo! 360 (which also closed recently), YouTube and Bebo existed before but with limited interactive content, so they were re-launched and then added to the growing list of social networking sites. Facebook developed to become available to high school networks.

 2006: Facebook gradually becomes available to corporate networks and then becomes completely universal. CyWorld expanded to China and the USA, while the world saw the introduction of Twitter. With a revenue of $400, 000 and employment figures around 150, Twitter has become incredibly popular and sometimes referred to as the ‘SMS of the internet’.

Concerns over privacy of new site

2010: Google have recently lauched their own social networking site called Google Buzz, it includes most of the interaction components of social networking sites- sharing links, photos, videos, status messages and comments. Although, Google executive Sergey Brin, announced the service as ‘bridging the gap between work and leisure’, there have been many concerns over privacy and criticisms of the conformity of the site competing with other major sites such as Facebook.

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My top 5 websites

Here is my take on the top five websites, you may agree that the shortlist is one from a student! But there is a few that haven’t made the cut believe it or not..we’re not all the same.

1. Facebook

Yes, it is number one regretably and also top on my thumbnails. But it is useful for staying in touch with those people who you don’t see (especially when at University) and for the nosey people who love to see what other people have been up to.

2. Google – and all its parteners

If ever in doubt about..ANYTHING. Google is the first search engine option that springs to mind, whether it is googling the difference between raisins and sultanas or browsing communication articles for the next dealine. Google books is actually my main reference for essays and scholarship.

3. eBay

Admitedly I’m a bit of an eBay junkie. But very useful for again..almost anything. From clothes to gadgets toSee full size image books, you can find whatever you want at a much lower price than on the high street.

4. Youtube

Browsing through my favourite tracks and the latest videos- instead of waiting for them to debut on MTV. It can also be used for ‘educational purposes’ as well as procrastination, there are teach yourself videos for instruments and it is where I learnt about the illuminati.

035 to London please

5. National Express

This website is a very simple and the most useful way to book a coach or train to their 54 most popular destinations, the transaction is easy and they provide you with options of an e-ticket or m-ticket. I like it for cheeky weekends home, once in a while to remember what home cooking tastes like.

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