I must confess I still do not have a Twitter account; mostly because I haven’t figured out what to do with it yet. I don’t want to activate an account just to read random people talking about random events in their life. I love my friends but I don’t even want to follow their every tweet. However, when you partner the struggling news industry with Twitter, it becomes clear what it can be used for. Twitter is the perfect forum for breaking news, and it would reach a large audience of people very quickly. It is speculated that Twitter will bring change to the news media. Many, if not all, of the news stations have Twitter accounts where they display short headlines of breaking news and advertise their TV shows.
The big question is does Twitter work in a meaningful way? Paul Farhi from the Washington Post provides the unsatisfying answer: It all depends. He does raise the good point that it mainly depends on the situation that it is used in. Reporters using Twitter during speeches and federal court cases is useful. It provides first-hand information to readers while the event is actually happening.He also acknowledges that it is tedious to sort through all the useless tweets to get to that useful piece of information.
Ultimately, I think the good outweighs the bad. I believe Twitter has and will continue to impact the news industry. It will be interesting to see where these impacts take the currently morphing news industry.