Tweets on C-SPAN

Traditional news media are increasingly using social media in their news reporting. Our recent study on newspaper reporting patterns has stressed this trend. But C-SPAN has now incorporated congressional Twitter feeds into its programming. During breaks between political debates, the television  network shows real-time tweets by members of Congress. Adam Hochberg, columnist for Poynter, interviewed me for an article on C-SPAN’s social media broadcasting.

The following is an excerpt from the article “C-SPAN incorporates short-form tweets into long-form news coverage” that was published by Poynter on Monday:

“It shows how traditional media and social media are merging more and more,” said Marcus Messner, who teaches social media journalism at Virginia Commonwealth University. “For politicians, it gives them another platform — even if they don’t have a speech scheduled or they don’t have a public appearance — to still be in the public eye.”

Meanwhile, Messner has another concern about broadcasting tweets on television. He worries that if the practice spreads, Twitter will lose its personal touch and become just another venue for politicians to issue boilerplate public statements.

“As soon as politicians know that their tweets are shown live on television, they’ll become more careful about what they’re tweeting,” Messner said. “I think that’s regretful, because social media gives politicians a chance to engage with community.”

Please read the complete article on the Poynter website.



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