Wick Communications

Media matters to message

In Online media on 11 Jun 2010 at 8:14 am

I begin here by saying, I’m still trying to get my head around this one. But the Pew Center has released a study of social media that points to the differences between various social media and the “legacy” media — and the reliance of the former on the latter.

As we all know, news travels differently in newspapers, on Twitter, through blogs and across other forms of media. Pew drilled down to find out how these platforms behave.

Among the specific findings — and directly from a post on the Pew site:

  • Social media and the mainstream press clearly embrace different agendas. Blogs shared the same lead story with traditional media in just 13 of the 49 weeks studied. Twitter was even less likely to share the traditional media agenda … On YouTube, the top stories overlapped with traditional media eight out of 49 weeks…
  • The stories that gain traction in social media do so quickly, often within hours of initial reports, and leave quickly as well. Just 5 percent of the top five stories on Twitter remained among the top stories the following week. This was true of 13 percent of the top stories on blogs and 9 percent on YouTube. In the mainstream press, on the other hand, fully 50 percent of the top five stories one week remained a top story a week later.
  • Politics, so much a focus of cable and radio talk programming, has found a place in blogs and on YouTube.  … On Twitter, however, technology stories were linked to far more than anything else, accounting for 43 percent of the top five stories in a given week. … By contrast, technology filled 1 percent of the newshole in the mainstream press during the same period.
  • While social media players espouse a different agenda than the mainstream media, blogs still heavily rely on the traditional press – and primarily just a few outlets within that – for their information. More than 99 percent of the stories linked to in blogs came from legacy outlets such as newspapers and broadcast networks.

There is a ton more on the site worthy of note. If you can spare the time, have a look. Let me know what implications the information has for your operation.



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