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News On Twitter: Is Twitter a Social Network or a News Media?

Twitter is now considered the best social network for news. It has evolved from being a strictly social site to an effective and reliable microblogging site. It’s like the majority of web users depend on the news on Twitter. This is where current events are published and analyzed, and experts dish their opinions in real-time.

Social media has changed the way we consume content. It’s now our first source of breaking news and trending information. However, one platform that has stood out when it comes to receiving and sharing news is Twitter. Is this platform a social network, or is it now a news media? There is so much that we can get from Twitter within a short time. So, here is its review.

What’s Twitter, a Social Network, or a News Media?

It’s funny how I log in to Twitter and see some of my followers refer to the platform as a newspaper. Well, this is where they get their daily news from. You can literally find any news on Twitter today. But is it news media or a social network?

Well, Twitter is a microblogging service where users can tweet about any topic within a 280-character limit. You can send and receive tweets, including links to websites and other resources. To find out what is happening within your region, you can go to the trending news on Twitter.

Here’s Why Twitter is so Important to Everyone?

You might have heard how the current president of the US tweets a lot. Twitter is actually a viral platform that has become very important in relaying news. If you want to find news on social media in the most effective way, then this is the right platform to depend on.

Its strength is based on delivering trending news in real-time. Until now, there is no other social platform that comes close to it. The social platform has changed how we consume news by measuring what is happening, where, and how.

While it’s clear that millions rely on the news on Twitter, there have been incidences that have led to fact-checking. This is not just a gossip site, and we have seen even Donald Trump getting fact-checked. So, it’s a platform that you can rely on for true and verifiable news.

But while tweets’ value seems to be increasing, the more people use it, some concerns come with it. Some of them include:

Health and Safety

The US Geological Survey (USGS) found that tracking mentions with the term “earthquake” within certain defined parameters could be ideal in yielding better results. According to the organization, such mentions can easily help track seismic activity across different parts of the world, and it’s more efficient than their previous measurement systems.

According to the USGS, they are working with researchers to find a better way to integrate Twitter data with their reporting systems to enhance their seismic algorithms’ effectiveness and speed up the alerts. This is definitely a life-changing process that would lead to faster reporting of seismic activities and ensure that there is a quick response. Twitter can be utilized as a safety tool to save a life.

Note: About health, there are still other contents that relate to this. For instance, the zakat virus outbreak and the Ebola pandemic have always been modeled in real-time on this app. they have been part of the trending news time and again.

Regarding safety, Twitter has been used to monitor ongoing unrest in different countries, including the recent Hong Kong unrest and the Egyptian civil unrest. All these highlights one clear thing that this app is a powerful data engine with extensive benefits.

Stock Prices

According to the Twitter Data blog, this platform has the ability to highlight the shift in stock markets. Note that user data is important, but there are also relevant groups of people who are well-versed with the stock market, and they frequently dish out their opinions on this app.

Note: three prominent financial services are using this Application. They include Eagle Alpha that uses Twitter data to deliver predictive results and offer relevant stock trends.

Twitter and News: How People Use Twitter to Get News

You can literally use this application to find any news today on Twitter. But do you know how to use Twitter for news? Well, you can get news on social media by from your followers or following news sites. But Twitter makes everything different. Take a look at these stats:

  • 82% of Twitter users access this app using their handset devices. Besides that, many users access Twitter across multiple devices. This means that there are hundreds of active users on the app getting news at any given time.
  • More than ¾ of Twitter users follow writers, commentators, and journalists.  Besides that, 2/3 of the users follow institutional accounts. Those looking for news on Twitter are likely to discover news writers and journalists and, consequently, glow them.
  • Lastly, almost 94% of Twitter users first get news on this app. this is through scrolling on their timelines or simply browsing through their following accounts. It’s worth noting that data estimates indicate that almost 34% of Twitter uses get news from trending topics, while around 30% use the search bar option.

Is Twitter Really Faster Than the News?

There’s no doubt that you can easily find the latest news on Twitter. This platform is the kind of news when ranking the most utilized sites for the latest news. But if we look at it differently, is Twitter faster than the news itself?

We are in an era where the best place to find the latest breaking news is social media. However, this app is proving to be faster in delivering news. But to what extent does this social media platform actually afford its users richer news?

We understand that the traditional media stream usually offers comprehensive news. On the other hand, a platform such as this is usually one of the first indicators of major news stories. When it comes to faster delivery of news, it’s not easy to pinpoint the exact moment that the story leaps into Twitter.

Many users tweet and retweet the same news. A constant shift in vocabulary means that the same news can change as the story evolves. This means that it’s difficult to fully grasp the event’s impact using the first few tweets. In the end, the impact may be massive than previously reported.

What we get is that Twitter may be fast in delivering important news. However, this “fastness” is equivalent to moving forward and not in-depth coverage that can give you a deeper understanding of an event. Data from research indicate that just around 20 of the total Twitter news volume isn’t retweeted, and less than 60% of tweets include image or link. This isn’t what traditional media houses offer.

How to Use Twitter: Critical Tips for New Users

Setting up a Twitter account and tweeting your first tweet is a simple and straightforward process. It only takes a couple of minutes, and below is how to go about it.

Create an Account

You can use a web page to create an account. Go to twitter.com and then sign up. If you want to use the app, you have to download it from the Google play store or app store. The signup process is the same where you have to provide your full name, which will create your display name. But you can always change your display name as many times as you wish.

When setting up your account, you need to add your phone number or email address. Ensure that they are valid because they will be used for the verification process.

Once you have received the verification number, could you enter it? Go ahead and choose a strong password that’s is difficult to guess but easy to remember. From here, you can sync your Twitter account with your contacts or not. Initially, Twitter will provide you with some accounts to follow, but you can search for accounts you want to follow.

Using the app, swipe right to go to your profile. You can edit it by adding a profile picture, location, and bio, among other things.

Tweet!

The tweet feature is a blue circle with a “+” plus what looks like a white feather. Click on it, and you will see “what’s happening?” Go ahead, then, and write your first tweet! If you are not ready to send it out yet, you can save it on the drafts.

In case one of the people you have followed has tweeted, and you want to reply, click on the tweet, and then enter your reply. It’s as easy as it gets. You can also retweet it!

To make sure that you enjoy the platform, here are a few tricks to help you:

  • You can set up a list: you don’t have to follow everyone. Besides that, you may want to see specific tweets from certain people only. You can create a list and add your favorites.
  • Hashtags are fun: they help you reach a bigger audience. So, make sure that you use them frequently.
  • You can go private: if you want to protect your tweets and account, you can always lock your account.

News On Twitter

How to Share Your News Release on Twitter

Do you want to share some news on Twitter? Data from a recently done survey indicates that 6 out of 10 Twitter users rely on this social site to break the news. So, you might want to be as factual and as simple as possible. But what do you need to do to have a great and factual press release?

Consider the Headline

It should be twitter-friendly. This is not your traditional media house, so you will have to do some tweaking. You can write the tweet several times before coming up with the final draft. Just make sure that it’s factual and interesting. Additionally, you can make it a little bit detailed. Twitter has a 280-character limit now.

Note: just like SEO, don’t forget to optimize some important keywords. These are the terms that people are likely to search for a lot on Twitter.

Consider the Release Time

If it’s breaking news, then you should release it as soon as possible. However, you can schedule general news depending on the target audience and their location. If you target businesses as in the Business-to-Business model case, then release the tweets weekly, especially during working hours. Meanwhile, if you target consumers, Neil Patel’s study indicates that engagement and click-through-rates are the highest on Wednesdays and weekends.

Consider Multimedia

People are more interested in visual content more than ever. Images and videos can increase the expected engagement rate can reach up to 4x. Multimedia is important in enhancing content engagement.

Is Twitter a Reliable Source of Breaking News?

Twitter isn’t 100% reliable. This is because independent or individual accounts usually release news, and it isn’t easy to verify this news at first. So, when it comes to breaking news, make sure that the Twitter sources are verified.

Besides that, this platform has introduced something that’s known as fact-checking news. So, tweets that are considered non-factual, especially from verified accounts as usually flagged. Generally, its credibility is much better compared to other social media platforms.

The Bottom Line

To sum up, Twitter is a news platform. This is where most breaking news is released, and the application has millions of active users worldwide. From health, finance, politics, education to entertainment, this platform has proved to be massive. However, make sure that you exercise caution regarding the content you consume. There are certain instances where the news may not be verified.

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James Trotta
I'm a blogger and also a news editor. I am obviously enthusiastic about worldwide news, including social media news. I've been following news trends and almost trying to fill you in with the stuff you're keen on.

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