By Mark Hanzlik, AWN Executive Director
David Carr (New York Times) chose to look in the mirror this week when he wrote a thoughtful, nuanced, non-judgemental piece about Twitter. This is from the guy who didn’t exactly embrace the 140 characters initially but Carr has become a major commenter on that platform, and he writes about the business of Media. What could be more perfect?
To tweet or not to tweet, that is still the question.
Twitter and mainstream media have been trading punches for some time, now we find that a number of correspondents are getting the ax for tweets gone terribly wrong. Carr lists recent examples of how Twitter has made life miserable for several journalists. Some news media are now taking a more aggressive approach to the usage of Twitter in the workplace while others continue to see it as not only a means of communication but also a marketing and public relations tool.
Carr points out that even columnists must base their content on some form of reporting which often does involve more extensive, complicated information which cannot be easily tweeted. Here’s a quote from Carr’s column that sums it up best in my opinion:
“A Twitter post is not a small news story or a column. It is a thought burped up, generally without consideration. Most big media organizations mediate the discourse of their employees because that’s the business they are in. More and more, media outlets may be seen as a federation of voices, but there has to be a there there, a single unifying principle or value.”
As he cleverly points out at the close of his column, even the discussion about whether or not Twitter news should be taken seriously is too long for the 140 character limit.