Media Insider: NPR Tweets Cause Uproar, Snapchat Launches New Features, Facebook Works with Local Newsrooms

Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s round-up of media stories from the week.

NPR on Twitter Declaration of Independence

NPR tweeted the Declaration of Independence and some people got angry

For about 20 minutes on July 4, NPR traveled back to 1776. To echo its 29-year on-air tradition, the public radio network tweeted out the Declaration of Independence, line by line, over its main Twitter account. But, not everyone got it. NPR spokeswoman Isabel Lara told The Washington Post that sharing the text via Twitter is a way to include more people in the tradition. Many Twitter users, however, reacted angrily to the thread, accusing NPR of spamming them or pushing anti-Trump propaganda — calling it an “interesting way to condone violence.”

Speaking of political rhetoric: Free-press groups warn of violence against media.

Snapchat lets you add links, voice filters and backdrops to Snaps

Snapchat is breaking its long-standing “no links” rule, while also providing some new creative tools to keep it one step ahead of Instagram, says TechCrunch. The new Paperclip feature lets users attach a website to a Snap that friends can swipe up to open in Snapchat’s internal browser. Backdrops lets users replace an object in a Snap with a colorful or artsy pattern to make it stick out, and Voice Filters give users the ability to remix the sound of their voices in Snaps.

Up for debate: Snapchat is transforming into the social network it never wanted to be.

Investigators explore if Russia colluded with pro-Trump sites during US election

The Guardian reported this week that investigators are looking into whether Trump supporters and far-right websites coordinated with Moscow over the release of fake news during the 2016 election. According to Mark Warner, the top Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee, “paid internet trolls working out of a facility in Russia” are responsible for spreading anti-Clinton fake news on social media sites during the campaign. Investigators are examining the interference, including possible links between Russian fake news factories and sites in the US.

ICYMI: CNN is standing by its controversial Reddit user story, but is it ethical?

Study seeks 1,300 journalists’ opinions on improving coverage of mass shootings

There have been 173 mass shootings so far this year, reports International Journalists’ Network. With intense media coverage spurring debate about gun violence, author Smith Dahmen and three other media scholars recently published a study on attitudes toward news coverage of mass shootings, using data from a national survey of more than 1,300 journalists. Among the findings: most journalists support typical perpetrator coverage, but also strongly support stories that focus on survivors and community resilience.

Traumatic events have been known to deeply affect the journalists who cover them. A new study investigates the emotional impact on journalists reporting the refugee crisis. 

Last month, Facebook launched a pilot program with 6 local newsrooms. Here’s how it’s going

Six local newsrooms have been working with Facebook to help the social giant establish stronger ties to local news. According to Poynter, each organization is working on their own project during the six month project, building a direct relationship with Facebook, undergoing training and learning best practices for using the social network. The projects are one month in, and continue to develop. So far, the common refrain is that the local publishers are interested in more education on products like Instant Articles and how their peers are using them successfully.

Did you know?  The top local news stories shared on Facebook and Twitter are mostly soft news.

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Tabresha B. Langham is a Customer Content Specialist with PR Newswire. She also is a social media junkie, foodie, music fiend and Auburn University Alumn (War Eagle!). Tune into her insights as a social curator at @PRNmedia, or follow @TabreshaL.

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