Jeremy Felt

‘Twitter For Newsrooms’ – But Why?

Twitter launched a site today, titled “Twitter For Newsrooms”, in which they provide some information on which Twitter tools or clients are available for journalists to use as well as how to use them. Through the handful of pages, the assumption is made that a newsroom needs Twitter in order to find sources and readers.

we know Twitter is a tool all journalists can use to find sources faster, tell stories better, and build a bigger audience for their work.

It is a marketing document, so that’s a valid assumption for Twitter to want to make, but a critical argument is missing.

Why exactly does a newsroom need Twitter?

What does an investment in Twitter provide that makes it worth a newsroom’s time and money? How is this investment better than a team creating the tool that a newsroom needs? One that can directly target their subscriber base.

At the very least, especially because they know it is a useful tool, Twitter should provide some kind of statistical data. It doesn’t have to be too in depth, but something to show that sources and readers exist with the potential to have a major impact.

  • Of 200 million users, how many are potential sources? (Tweet # times/day)
  • Of 200 million users, how many are potential readers? (Click # links/day)

While print circulation appears to be dying, and for good reason, millions of newspapers and magazines are still sold every day. Without Twitter, millions of people are still reading articles in print and online.

Twitter is hot right now, and I’m an active user, but news organizations should know they still have a chance to be creative on their own, outside of a silo.

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