Social networking sites become journalists’ tools

Kelly McBride of PoynterOnline reports on how journalists can use social networking sites to get the latest news as well as who is talking about.
Social networking sites, like Facebook and MySpace, were originally created for friends to share common interest and in touch with one another more often. These sites have grow so big and attracted so many people with different interest that they can be a source for breaking news and potential sources.
Drawbacks to using social networking sites is the information must be independently verified because people may make things up or exaggerate stories, especially when they are in social setting.
“Balancing the personal and professional turned out to be the thorniest issue,” said McBride. Journalists must use “restraint when it comes to making political statements and revealing your own biases,” on their profile page on either Facebook or MySpace.

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