Opinion: Is Social Media News Reporting Making Some Jobs Redundant?
It’s all about here and now. Live reporting from social media platforms means that you don’t have to wait for the edited, chopped and curated version of the news and you get to see it as it happens leaving no room for non-accurate reporting.
Therefore it didn’t come as a surprise when New York Times Executive Editor Dean Baquet and Managing Editor Joe Kahn circulated a memo making lots of editing jobs redundant on May31st. According to the big bosses at The New York Times having too many layers (read; copy editors, researchers, sub) was costly and slowing down the main objective of getting news out immediately. So in order to churn out more original stories fast the newspaper will be replacing these jobs with reporters and on-ground journalists.
So is there more news to cover now than before? Or is it that social media live coverage of events leave no room for long copy about breaking news story? Or is it a question of who gets the news out first? Newspapers have always competed with TV but with social media content creators at every corner the competition just got a lot fiercer.
With Donald Trump using Twitter to release his 146 character statements and Facebook and Instagram Live being the best means to share individual stories, there seems to be no room left for 2,000 word traditional reporting style. We believe what we see and hear – unedited and uninterrupted. And if your peer group has also acknowledged, commented, liked and shared the story by your favourite digital influencer then you will follow suit.
Instagram brought out a photographer in everyone and LinkedIn made it possible for everyone to share their learnings. The rise of Social Media Influencers means that many more jobs in the future would either have to be reimagined or made redundant.