Media Insider: Facebook Combats Fake Stories, Diversity in Newsrooms Trending Upward, Twitter to Allow Longer Tweets

Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s round up of journalism, blogging and freelancing stories from the week.

twitter headquarters

Photo by Kevin Krejci used under CC BY 2.0.

Twitter Likely to Start Allowing Longer Tweets From Sept. 19 (Editor & Publisher)

Twitter has become known as the platform used to get information out quickly and concisely; however, sometimes the 140-character maximum just isn’t enough. Editor & Publisher reports the social media platform will change the way it counts tweet characters by excluding media attachments and Twitter handles from the character limit. The new roll-out could come into effect at the start of next week, but it’s not certain whether all character maximizing changes will happen at once. Still, you soon may be able to fit that extra hashtag without cringing.

When Journalists Get Their Info From Social Media, Audiences Find the Reports Less Credible (American Press Institute)

It’s common for journalists to use social media, instead of traditional methods such as phone calls, in-person interviews and press conferences, to track down information. Despite this digital age practice, a recent study finds that info received from social media is seen as less credible to audiences, reports the American Press Institute. The study indicates traditional forms of gathering information have a higher average credibility perception, and while some social media platforms fared better than others, Twitter is reported as being seen as the least credible of all.

Facebook to Roll Out Tech for Combating Fake Stories in its Trending Topics (TechCrunch)

Since the firing of Facebook’s Trending Topics editorial team, fake news stories have spawned the section, pushing Facebook to actively develop technology that will prevent this from happening, reports Sarah Perez of TechCrunch. Facebook plans to use technology similar to that used for its News Feed feature, in hopes of weeding out hoax stories and clickbait, and also making the content of Trending Topics more relevant to users all over the world.

Newsrooms Getting More Diverse But Still Don’t Reflect Communities They Serve (Columbia Journalism Review)

Only 17 percent of newsrooms’ staffs are people of color, according to the most recent diversity survey of the American Society of News Editors. Columbia Journalism Review says the results appear to show an improvement in diversity and inclusion in the media; however, critics suggest disapproval about the disclosure of data not listing individual organizations’ diversity data. Although there’s a growing number of minorities in newsrooms across the country, consensus is that newsrooms still must work to achieve a staff that more closely resembles the communities they serve.

Beacon Reader, a Journalism Crowdfunding Platform, is Closing Down (Poynter)

Popular journalism crowdfunding platform, Beacon Reader, announced it is shutting down, meaning journalists no longer can earn money through the site, reported Benjamin Mullin of Poynter. The platform, responsible for backing several high-profile journalism projects, has been around for three years and does not specify reasons for closing. Instead, the company reported the news via email to its users which concludes the platform was “an interesting and rewarding venture” and that it wishes the journalists the very best in future endeavors.

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Tabresha B. Langham is a Customer Content Specialist with PR Newswire. She also is a social media enthusiast, foodie, and lover of SEC Football (War Eagle!). Tune into her insights as a social curator at @PRNmedia, or follow @TabreshaL.

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