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University of Edinburgh Twitter Social Media

Twitter won’t replace regular news outlets, but is better for events and niche subjects, research finds


By Ishbel Macleod | PR and social media consultant

July 10, 2013 | 1 min read

Research by the University of Edinburgh into 51 million tweets has found that there is ‘little evidence’ that the social media service will replace regular news outlets.

Scientists at the Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow developed a software algorithm to track Twitter activity over 11 weeks in the summer of 2011, and discovered that neither Twitter nor newswires were regularly faster than the other in breaking high-profile news.

Newswires tracked included the BBC, CNN, Reuters and the New York Times.

The research ruled: “Twitter’s main benefits for news are bringing additional coverage of events, and for sharing news items of interest to niche audiences or with a short lifespan, such as local sports results.”

Research by Havas PR unveiled yesterday found that consumers trust local newspapers and radio over Facebook.

University of Edinburgh Twitter Social Media

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