Essay Sample on the Manner in Which Social Media Has Changed News Consumption

4 pages
1041 words
Sewanee University of the South
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What is the issue under discussion?

The topic under discussion entails how social media is changing news consumption and is currently a hot topic that has been under discussion for quite some time.

Why is it an important topic at this time?

The topic is of great importance because the modern society has undergone a technological advancement. As such, a significant number of people now own smart phones, and almost everyone has access to the internet.

Is this currently a hot topic? Has it been a hot topic for some time? Is it a new technology that has just come on the scene?

The topic is not very new and has been there for some time. The technology is new and has been advancing with the invention of new Applications. Social media has a significant impact on the daily news consumption since it has affected the manner in which journalism is practiced and how people discern news in the contemporary society.

Thesis Statement

This paper aims to investigate and find out how social media is changing news consumption. Additionally, the paper will assess the historical and current perspectives of social media and news consumption. Some of the social media platforms discussed in the paper include Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter and YouTube (Messing & Westwood, 2014).

Historical perspective

The topic has been generated hot contentious debates with one side arguing that journalism is dying while others contend that journalism is not dying, but rather it is undergoing a revolution through the technological transformation of social media platforms. The debate has been provoked by the decrease of news consumption from the accustomed news springs like televisions, newspapers, and radio. As a result, a significant percentage of people access news from the social media platforms and the internet.

Media Producers and Consumers Perspectives on Social Media and News Consumption

For quite some time now, journalists have been the watchdog of content for traditional media. However, with the high increase use of social media, the role seems not to stand anymore. Journalists have embraced technology and supported the use of social media platforms to convey their content. Also, journalists now have their accounts where they communicate their news findings with their followers and fans through Facebook and Twitter among other forums. However, some journalists have argued that the immediacy of social media platforms permit them to distribute content that is categorized as useful news value easily. On the other hand, media consumers have benefited a great deal from social media as they can access news from the comfort of their mobile phones, and anytime they wish to. Thereby, the communities can receive news promptly and hence useful as opposed to other traditional platforms like newspapers.

Current Perspectives

Whats going on right now with this issue/topic?

The main issue on the topic is the helpfulness and the timeliness of media consumption. For instance, Twitter is perceived to be the best when it comes to news timeliness since it gives the impression of captivating journalists who want to convey breaking news and appropriate links. On the other hand, Facebook appears to propel chances to capture or link with the community. The two platforms permit newspapers to easily and fast share the news that qualifies to be helpful and timely to the society. For example, if there is a road accident causes a heavy traffic on a certain highway, Twitter helps in timely conveying the message for drivers to avoid that rout. Such information is seen to be both timely and helpful (Nielsen, & Schroder, 2014).

Why should we be interested in this topic today?

The contemporary society ought to be interested in the topic because the increased use of internet and social media platforms has transformed journalism. Platforms like Twitter and Facebook have given an opportunity for people to play a great role in sharing news. As such, there is no difference between the people responsible for distributing news and those receiving them. The media users are not only able to share the media content but also change the information hence calling the need for concern. There have been people modifying the news so that sometimes you cannot tell what is true and what is not.

What are the positions of the competing interests?

However, there are some competing interests in using social media as a model for channeling news. It has been observed that social media platforms do not provide enough space for journalists to offer the full account of what transpired as opposed to other traditional channels of reporting. For instance, Twitter which is the most popular medium for breaking news only offers 140 characters for the user to tell what is trending (Nielsen, & Schroder, 2014).

Forecasts for the Future of Social Media and News Consumption

Currently, a significant number of media producers share their personal views through the social media and hence twisted the boundary between personal perspectives and professional. As such, their work is on the verge of being seen as advocacy rather than journalism. In turn, newspapers could lose readers and significance. However, YouTube is seen to be the next greatest social news channel as close to half the American population is users of the site as a source of news. Also, 16% of Americans use Twitter and half of that population claim that Twitter is their main source of news.


Brief restatement of the thesis

This paper has discussed the manner in which social media has changed news consumption. Also discussed in the paper are the historical and current perspectives of social media and news consumption.

Brief summary of your findings

It has been found out that the trend for social media being used for reporting and distributing news is likely to increase as a result of increased users of platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter. Therefore, it is of paramount importance that news be helpful and timely so as to be of great significance to the community.



Messing, S., & Westwood, S. J. (2014). Selective exposure in the age of social media: Endorsements trump partisan source affiliation when selecting news online. Communication Research, 41(8), 1042-1063.

Nielsen, R. K., & Schroder, K. C. (2014). The relative importance of social media for accessing, finding, and engaging with news: an eight-country cross-media comparison. Digital journalism, 2(4), 472-489.


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