Monday, May 31, 2010...10:06 am

Bloggers are not so parasitic on news media as we thought

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Via Bristol Editor, here’s an interesting post from Advancing the Story on the divergence of mainstream media content from the blogosphere and social media.
A survey by The Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism has found that:

The stories and issues that gain traction in social media differ substantially from those that lead in the mainstream press.

And, unlike the norm in mainstream media, blogs, YouTube and Twitter also had a wide differentiation in their lead story – only sharing the top story once, with coverage of the Iranian election protests in June 2009.
As evinced by social media coverage of Michael Jackson’s death, blogs and social media don’t focus for that long on any one story (Iranian elections aside, which had more longevity).
This tends to be in contrast with mainstream media, which tends to milk stories until the public is sick of them, and beyond. Jeff Jarvis has an interesting post here about how the TV news agenda lingered on Michael Jackson long after online news consumers had moved on, and Recovering Journalist is good on why this might have been so.
It seems the common perception of bloggers and social networking as parasitic on mainstream media may be less true. It’ll be interesting to see if the fact that they don’t share the same news agenda as established media will also be used as a stick to beat them with.


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