Last year I was commissioned to write a report on ‘Social Media and News’ for the Open Society Media Program, as part of the ‘Mapping Digital Media’ series. The report is now available here (PDF).
As I say in the introduction, I focused on “the areas that are most strongly contested and hold the most importance for the development of news reporting”, namely:
- competition over copyright between individuals, news organisations, and social media platforms;
- the move to hyperlocal and international-scope publishing;
- the tensions between privacy and freedom of speech; and
- attempts by governments and corporations to control what happens online.
These and other developments (such as the growth of APIs which “connect the information that we consume with the information we increasingly embody”) are then explored with specific reference to issues of editorial independence, public interest and public service, pluralism and diversity, accountability, and freedom of expression.
That’s quite a lot to cover in 4,000 words. So for those who want to explore some of the issues or cases in more detail – or follow recent updates (and a lot has happened even since finishing the report) – I’ve been collecting related links at this Delicious ‘stack’, and on an ongoing basis at this tag.