Social media are a danger

The European Commission thinks that social media are a danger for negotiations. The online media can cause serious debates with the public.

The European Commission is negotiating about a new agreement about intellectual property. The last agreement they made about this subject, was rejected because of the negative reactions on the social media. Many people were against it because they thought it would restrict the freedom of speech.

I personally don’t think the European Commission should make such a big deal out of it. People have a strong opinion about everything on the social media. Even the smallest things can create a massive debate. For example when there’s a football game on the television, everybody on Twitter is discussing about it. Everybody has the right to have an opinion but that doesn’t mean you always have to listen to that opninions.

On the other hand, this is a very important subject. The freedom of speech cannot be restricted. And in this case The European Commission should listen to the people. But that doesn’t mean that social media are dangerous for negotiations. It are the negotiations that are dangerous for the freedom of speech.


Netwerk uitbouwen op Twitter

Eens je een artikel geschreven hebt, wil je natuurlijk dat dat gelezen wordt. Twitter is daarvoor een handig hulpmiddel dankzij de zogenaamde hashtags, maar bij vaste volgers is de kans uiteraard groter dat je tweet (met gekoppelde content) gelezen wordt. Maar hoe aggregeer je die volgers? Hieronder vind je drie gemakkelijke manieren.

Twitter Analytics
“Find, analyze and optimize for social growth” is de slagzin van Twitter Analytics. Het zorgt er dus voor dat je gepaste volgers snel en gemakkelijk kan vinden en analyseren.
TweetSpeed zou dé oplossing zijn om meer gerichte followers op te bouwen. Het redeneert volgens het principe “volgen doet gevolgd worden”, maar die garantie heb je natuurlijk niet. Daarbij is de tool best duur, maar voor bedrijven kan TweetSpeed een gemakkelijke manier zijn om nieuwe klanten aan te trekken.
Van het begrip Yellow Pages heb je vast al gehoord. Daarvan is de naam “Twellow” afgeleid. Die tool is dan ook een soort telefoonboek voor Twitter. Het werkt in verschillende categorieën, gebruiksvriendelijk!

Tips & tricks for online journalists, good or bad?

For new journalists who are entering the world of digital journalism, it’s not always easy to just start working with the new media. Therefor, has posted an article  about tips and tricks for newbies entering the field.

Tip 1 – Build your own brand

In the article, they say journalists have to build their own brand, by using social media for example. Peter Bale, vice president and general manager of CNN International Digital, says Twitter is by far the most important source of news now, and it’s about the individual.
But my question now: if journalists will start to build their own brand, will their news coverage still be independent and neutral? In my opinion, it’s very hard to post neutral news when you’re the only one writing and controlling it. When you post an article on your own blog, I believe it will always be coloured with the own thoughts of the journalist. There’s for example no editor in chief who can control the article.

Tip 2 – Be good storytellers, but understand the business

The article states that journalists, of course, need to be good storytellers. But they also have to understand the business and the economy they’re working in. And the journalists need to be able to work with the new technology and the new designs.

Tip 3 – Be a curator

Journalists can be a curator and offer their audience a wider look on the world.

I agree with this tip. Because of the internet and the use of digital journalism, it’s much easier to link to other articles, and so the audience will get more information. And hopefully the audience will learn more and will have a more open look on things.

Tip 4 – Interact with the community

The article here says that journalists often fail to keep contact with their audience online. I agree that it’s often true that online journalists don’t talk with their audience, but I understand it must be very difficult. If an article or a post gets a lot of response, it’s not simple to answer to the needs of the audience. And as I said before, the journalist needs to be carefull with what he says, because actually, he needs to stay neutral.

Tip 5 – Ask questions

Journalists need to be curious and ask questions all the time.


I think it’s a very good article, but I do have my doubts with some of the tips. All the tips are true, but I think the biggest problem with online journalism is that the journalists aren’t being controlled. And I think that will colour their content.


Social Journalism Study UK 2013

I came accross these UK study results about how social media has an impact on journalism. I was stunned when I read that Twitter is more popular than Facebook for UK journalists, but when I thought it through it’s actually logical. Twitter isn’t very popular when you know that most of the people who know it, don’t use it. But it’s actually very helpful to find the latest news where Facebook is loaded with a lot of uninteresting personal status updates.

An other interesting thing that the study proves, is that UK journalists use social media for up to two hours a day. That’s quite a lot, I believe. 22% use it for 2-4 hours a day and 11% even use it for more than four hours! What I almost can’t believe is that about 4% doesn’t use it at all. I figured that every journalist uses it today, but four out of hundred doesn’t. Weird! The reasons why they don’t use it, are privacy, the regulations from their organisation and online hate or trolling.

92% of the journalists uses Twitter, we already knew that Twitter was popular among UK journalists, but did you also know that they like LinkedIn better than Facebook? 83% uses LinkedIn and 82% Facebook. It’s only one percent, but still!

Not all the journalists use the same social medium, so how do PRs contact journalists? Well, still 90% by e-mail, 58% by telephone (!) and only 19% by social media.

Is social media that important for (UK) journalism as I thought? The answer is clearly “NO!”.

Would you like an expert?

(Almost) all of us are on some social media. I, for instance, use it very much to find people I need for school, or to keep in touch with classmates for a project or two.

Facebook is all right for searching people, but not ideal to find an expert. You have to befriend them, otherwise your message will get lost in the “other”-category of your mailbox.

Twitter is very good to contact people, but sometimes you can’t be sure they see you message in time. Sometimes it’s not even the correct account. Very annoying.

If you want to look for an expert, here are some good ideas:

  • First, the most obvious of them all. Wikipedia. I know, but a lot of those people know very much about the things they write about. Here you find a lot of names, and you can contact them via Facebook, Twitter or, if they’re real experts, there will be an email-adress when you “google” them.
  • Slideshare is a site on which people share powerpoint-presentations. You don’t do that if you don’t know about the project you talk about.
  • Scribd is also a nice site. It’s a digital library. You can search for author’s, for subjects, for books etc.
  • Everybody knows Pinterest. Even I do, and I had never visited the site. Now, I have and account (there’s nothing on it, don’t bother looking for it) just so I could see what the fuss is about. But it’s true, you can find lots of people on that site. If you don’t get stuck on cute dog-pictures, you search for architecture for instance. Then you find a lot of people who know a lot of architecture.
  • is also very useful! You ask a question, and real people anwser it. The one downside is that it encourages bullying and it has some inappropriate sexual content on it. I have heard that the makers are working on that.

How & what do mainstream media tweet?

Every newspaper, every TV channel, every radio station and every press agency is using Twitter. Tweeting is a daily job. But how do these organizations tweet? How often do they tweet? What do they tweet? And do they use Twitter to gain insights from followers?

The Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism and the George Washington University’s school of Media and Public Affairs studied the Twitter feeds from 13 major news organizations.
The main reason news organizations use Twitter is that they want to spread their ‘own’ news. 93% of the examined tweets sent readers back to their own websites.  There is not much engagement with followers and sharing outside information is rare. The news they tweet matches the news they disseminate on their own platforms.


Although Twitter offers an interactive service, the news organizations don’t use it in the way it should be used. A service like that gives them the opportunity to communicate with their readers, to get to know them. That would be a good way to give their readers the news they actually want (to read). News organizations mainly only disseminate their own news, in a non-interactive way.

Only 2% of the tweets sent by these media contained information that wasn’t their own. Maybe this is a little bit old school. Of course you want people to read your magazine,  your information, your opinions,… . But there isn’t any moneymaking  involved here, since people don’t pay to read your tweets.

So why would they distribute other people’s news or information that isn’t theirs?

This could give readers the opportunity to create the whole story, with different point of views and opinions. As a journalist, you want to inform people. You’re not Superman and you don’t have to know/write everything. That’s why it would be easy to refer to other content.

Why wouldn’t they distribute other people’s news?

The news organizations simply don’t want people to go over to the competitors. What I said before about the fact that there isn’t any money involved, is not entirely correct. The advertisers won’t give your organization any money if there isn’t any interest in your articles.

So they have to find the happy medium. We can’t force them to share other organization’s work, but a story could be so complete if they did. Then the readers get the best out of the best. Unfortunately, I don’t think this could ever happen. But that hasn’t got anything to do with the ethics of journalism: gathering news, writing good articles and give it to your readers to provide them with the information they want and need.  It’s the serious business of money. It always is.

Read the full article here