OLD Media Moves

Tech journalism can improve in 2021 with better sources

December 27, 2020

Posted by Chris Roush

Southern Cal journalism professor Mike Ananny writes for Nieman Lab that technology journalism can improve in 2021 if it improves its sourching.

Ananny writes, “Quote circuits definitely exist, and smart journalists on tight deadlines use them to get fast, predictable, and digestible information from people they trust. The shorthands and shared worldviews of strong reporter–source relationships make conversations faster and stories tighter. I’ve been that source, and I know some of those journalists.

“But when technology journalists use social media to develop source relationships they run the risk of relying on networks that are too small, too predictable, and too reflective of the very technological power their reporting should view skeptically. Research tells us that journalists rely heavily on Twitter, that such reliance creates biases, and that journalists too quickly mistake what they see on social media for public opinion.

“These dependencies, biases, and false equivalences not only exclude many women, trans, and BIPOC people, but that they also feed skewed images of social media fame among academics.”

Read more here.

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