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Social Media and the News

Alternative journalism is growing, thanks to the internet and social media platforms, The development of alternative journalism has been significantly aided over time by social media and the internet in ways that were before unthinkable.

Social media platforms, which were initially used to connect with friends and family, were later embraced by companies looking to reach out to clients through a popular new communication channel. However, these platforms have since evolved into important news sources. 

Over 50% of adults in 24 of the 40 measured nations utilized social media as a general news source, according to an annual survey studying social media news consumption. 

In Kenya, 82% use social media as their source of News, while in America research shows that 71% of Americans now get News content via social media platforms

By enabling users to post in real-time as events unfold from anywhere as long as they have a smartphone on hand, social media platforms like YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have significantly contributed to modernizing and adding immediacy to already immediate news channels. The best of citizen journalism is here. People now regard social media more as a reputable news source since it is becoming integrated with mainstream media and is therefore becoming more significant. 

An example is Darnella Frazier a teen who filmed and posted the murder of George Floyd at the hand of Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin. Her video footage which she posted on Facebook was taken on by all mainstream media including CNN, ABC News, and CBS News among others, as they ran the George Floyd murder story.

She was also given a journalist award by Pulitzer. The Pulitzers are the most prestigious Journalism awards in the United States of America.  

Image by F. Muhammad from Pixabay

Twitter is second in popularity to Facebook as the primary daily online news source among social media sites.

Infographic by Sarah Ntabadde for the Circular

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