Posts Tagged ‘facebook’

Social Sites Deliver the News

Wednesday, April 9th, 2014

It comes as no surprise that many Americans are now getting their new from the web, or more specifically from social networking sites. But the scale of the exodus from traditional media seems to be increasing. According to a report by the Pew Research Center, now more than 3 in 10 US adults get their news from Facebook.

The majority claim that although it’s not the main reason that they log in to the social networking site, they do read the news stories when logged on. Perhaps the more worrying statistic is that only a third of users on the site, get their news from an organisation or journalists news feed. This suggests that they’re getting their current affairs and news directly from friends.
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There are other sites which people are turning too, including YouTube, Twitter and Google Plus. Although in many places and establishments many sites like this including Facebook are blocked (workarounds are common though).

There is no doubt that social media sites like Facebook are going to be a major sources of news for many users in the years ahead. It is hoped that traditional news media with qualified and respected journalists are still represented well on here. The problem is that these sites are largely responsible for controlling what we see and have access to primarily through their algorithms.

The control doesn’t stop there though either, especially if you consider the practice of geotargeting. Websites also control who is able to access their site depending on location. So for instance a site like Pandora or Hulu, blocks anyone who tries to access from outside the USA. The BBC won’t allow anyone to use the wonderful Iplayer application if they are based outside the UK. In fact you can’t watch any of the UK TV stations online if you’re outside the country – unless you use a technique from this video.