The other day, Mashable published an article about using social media for investigative journalism. It outlines a few different scenarios in which investigative journalism was accomplished, at least in part, through social media of some sort.
The article brings up an interesting point: how is social media changing the way reporting is done? At one point in time, reporters would have to go searching for a source, maybe get some leads for other sources, and go from there. Now, all someone needs to do is post it on Twitter, and the reporter can retweet – potentially getting insight from hundreds of people very quickly.
Mashable isn’t the only place that says Twitter is a useful tool, nor is it a recent change. ReadWriteWeb posted more than two years ago about how they use the tool to get news.
So Twitter, and other social media sites to lesser extent, are changing the way that reporting is done. This has extended even to the citizen journalists of the world, as they can do the same thing. Each follower is a potential source, and each outside visitor is a potential new follower.
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Expanding on the above idea of citizen journalism, there is a Minnesota social media web based entirely on citizen journaling. You can see and read about it at their website.
So how about you guys answer their slogan in the comments: Will journalism be done by you or to you?
Because I think the answer is the future of journalism as we know it.