Social media usage grows among business journalists
Four out of five business journalists use Twitter during their workday, while half are blogging, according to an informal survey of business journalists conducted by the Society of American Business Editors and Writers.
And more than three-fourths of the business journalists who responded also use Facebook and LinkedIn for job purposes.
The survey results show the growing usage of social media and other new technology among business journalists in addition to the traditional tools of the job such as a computer, a telephone and a notebook.
For example, Bloomberg News, one of the largest employers of business journalists in the country, recently hired a social media director to train its reporters and editors on how to use Facebook and Twitter more effectively. New York Times reporter Brian Stelter, who covers television and digital media, has more than 62,000 followers on Twitter.
“The day when business journalists could simply report and write stories about business and the economy using traditional resources have long passed,” said Kevin Noblet, president of SABEW and managing editor of wealth management coverage at Dow Jones Newswires. “Now they have to be constantly online, looking for and soliciting information in new and unique ways and providing business news consumers with information in multiple formats throughout the day.”
Social media technology is also changing how business journalists interact with their sources and how business news is first reported. Last month, Pacific Investment Management Co. co-founder Bill Gross posted on Twitter that The Wall Street Journal was working on a story about the management company’s losses from investing in Lehman Brothers — a full 10 days before the story appeared in the paper.
Still, nearly half of the business journalists who responded to the survey said that the new technology had made their job easier. Less than a third said their work was now harder, while 20 percent said there was no difference.
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