Social Media changing the World? or is American Social Media changing the world?

The reason why I have phrased the above questions as so, is because, we as Americans and many other Western Countries, measure what journalism and social media is by the tools we use in our own country and not in a universal or secular perspective. As I am reading many of my classmates blogs and developing my own opinion of journalism as a whole, I have realized that in western countries, where freedom of press is more prevalent, the tools of social media we use can set the stage for other countries and how to use  different methods of reporting and releasing news.

For example,  a classmate, Billy Rivera, posted an interesting article about microblogging in china. In china, where face book is banned, they have created websites like face book, such as http://www.renren.com, that is almost identical to face book. It’s not a statement of ego boosting, but more just observation;  Other countries can influence how other countries use social media. Even in Ghana, how the presence of Google is trying to make a permanent home, its is trying to provide  a new way for the  people of that country to be able to look up news and other valuable information. Western companies are slowly influencing  social media across the world.

I know that my opinion will be more refined once I complete more research, hear opposing viewpoints, and grow as an aspiring journalist; however, in the meantime, I feel that this thesis has some merit because of such current events that showed how dependent western countries are on monopolizing news media outlets. For example, the most popular of them all, is the revolution happening in Libya, Egypt. When their government decided to cut off the ability for news to be passed through the common social media outlets to teh outside world or companies like the associated press, the rest of the world turn to a lowly, and once viewed a terrorist-news reporting agency ( “al- jazeerah”), for the update on events happening in that country. For once, in a very long time, a small, independent news organization was able to control the “news” given to the world. In addition, one of the only outside reporters, used twitter to keep updates on the events. I guarantee that the al- jazeera website and viral videos on that website was the most viewed in their history of existence.

But looking at this specific example, would the world have been able to know what had happened if it wasn’t for social media websites? many of the activists who were able to update their face book gave another perspective into the revolutions and emotion of these protests.  In the United states, a reporter for http://www.commondreams.org  reported an article/blog on how the news outlets were inaccurately portraying the protests to Governor Walkers radical attempt to fix the state’s budget. With the efficiency of the internet and the love childs it has spawned, social media isn’t necessarily changing the  world of social media; just speeding up how it is received to the masses. It is because of this variable, instant information, that the news world is changing; or in my eyes trying to keep up. I think its how the public accepts or responds to how news is released through social media that controls the evolution of news, not necessarily the tools themselves. After all, if we all choose to go back to newspapers,  the question of how social media is changing the world wouldn’t even exist. Until next type…….

 

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