This morning I finished my essay, at least to the point where it has everything in it. Tweaks will have to be made no doubt, but I'm pretty pleased thus far. It's been a really interesting topic to write about and so I have enjoyed researching and writing it.
We were given the choice of five essay titles, each quite wide themselves. I chose the title of New News and the area I chose to cover in my essay... or rather the question I set out to answer was: How has technology and social networks enabled news to spread faster and further? Or something along those lines. My essay title, as it stands at the moment is:
How Twitter, and new technology, has enabled news to spread faster than ever before – and to a wider audience.
Although I briefly cover other social networks, Facebook, YouTube etc, I really wanted to focus on Twitter. And that is what I have done.
This is a paragraph early on in the essay, talking about Twitter:
"Twitter users are invited to share what they are doing, “What's happening?”. However, Twitter is also used to share information whether it be interesting facts, humorous video links or breaking news stories. It is the latter that proves to be a huge internet revolution. When a particular story becomes popular it is known as a 'trending topic', grouped by words that are commonly used in the latest tweets. Similarly, #hashtagging is used by users to specify a particular theme. These features make spreading information even easier, and with the possibility to 're-tweet' those messages that a user finds particularly interesting, news stories can spread, not only, faster than ever before but also to a wider audience,
across the world."
Some great TED talks I reference in my essay:
Evan Williams on Listening to Twitter Users
Clay Shirky: How Social Media can make History
And interesting articles:
How Twitter helped to spread information on the Japan earthquake
Six Degrees of Separation
Social media facts