Posted February 26, 2010 2:36 pm by with 3 comments

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The Society For New Communications Research has come out with a new study on journalists’ use of social media—and it’s not as optimistic (or maybe realistic) as another study published this month. In a survey of 300+ journalists, the second annual Middleberg/SNCR Survey of Media in the Wired World (PDF executive summary) found that most of them did use social media—but a significant minority didn’t. However, in this study, journalists did admit that social media was important.

Earlier this month, Cision and Don Bates of GWU found that 89% of journalists source stories from blogs. The Middleberg/SNCR study found that nearly 70% of journalists surveyed are using social networking sites, and 66% are reading blogs.

(The number of journalists using social networking sites constitutes a “28% increase since the results of the 2008 Survey of Media in the Wired World were released,” but I’m not sure if they mean 28% [meaning it was ~55% in 2008] or 28 percentage points [meaning it was around 40% in 2008].)

Twitter and other microblogging sites and tools are at 48%, a 25% increase since 2008, while online video is up to 48%. 25% are listening to podcasts.

However, these journalists were (I choose to believe) more honest than the ones surveyed by GWU. The last study showed that only 15% of journalists think social media is “important” and 40% think it’s “somewhat important.” This study indicated that “Nearly 80% of journalists surveyed believe that bloggers have become important opinion-shapers in recent years” and “91% of journalists surveyed agree that new media and communications tools and technologies are enhancing journalism to some extent.”

What do you think? Which of these “really” reflects how journalists feel about social media?

  • Last week, one of our local news stations scooped all other outlets in the area because they followed a client on Facebook. Journalism is definitely changing with the evolution of social media. Using it as a new frontier for collecting information, in this case, certainly served one journalist well.

  • The title is a misnomer as the article supports an increase of journalistic incorporation of social media.

  • Adi

    The frustrating thing for me is how many journalists still refuse to link out to sources in their articles. Many may use social media but few it seems really get the culture behind social media.