Social media has transformed every newsroom in the country. A recent study talks about journalists’ habits.

2017 Cision Global Social Journalism Study

When it comes to social media, 90 percent of you use it for work at least once a week.

This is according to Cision’s new 2017 Global Social Journalism study, which highlights journalist use of social media.

It’s the sixth in a series of studies published by Cision that survey and chart changes in how journalists use social platforms. The study also closely examines problems social media has created for the industry (Read: Battling fake news and the increased focus on speed vs. analysis).

Other study specifics:

  • 42 percent of respondents use five or more types of social media regularly
  • Time spent on social media remains relatively stable
  • 19 percent engage with audience every hour and 47 percent engage daily
  • 48 percent feel they could not carry out their work without social media
  • 51 percent of respondents feel fake news is a serious problem in their area of journalism

The Struggle to Gain Public Trust

Several months ago, Cision surveyed 1,500 journalists for its 2017 State of the Media Report. It found a great number of you feel like you’ve lost public trust.


This is a serious problem.

“It’s clear that ‘fake news’ on social media sites and the discourse that follows might be undermining the overall value of their craft,” says Chris Lynch, Cision CMO.

The question becomes how does your newsroom overcome this uphill climb?

Interestingly, where you sit in the newsroom and demographics play some part in the level of concern around fake news.

News, politics and current affairs journalists were most concerned about fake news as were younger respondents, when compared with older colleagues.

Cision 2017 Social Journalism Study

Hitting That Publish Button

So while nearly half of you said you couldn’t carry out your job without social media, it’s not getting any easier.

In fact, work productivity has declined over the years, from 44 percent in 2012 to 37 percent in 2017.

So how do you mostly use social media in the newsroom? You publish.

That held true for 67 percent of respondents to the Cision Global Social Journalism study.

Interacting with audience came in at 60 percent and monitoring the news was important to 46 percent of you.

Meanwhile, just 6 percent of respondents deemed interacting with PR professionals on social media as being very important.

Cision 2017 Social Journalism Study

Getting the Story Right vs. First

We’ve heard this debate before: What’s more important – breaking news and getting a scoop or verifying the full story?

According to the study, the majority of respondents — 77 percent agreed or strongly agreed — that social media encouraged journalists to focus on speed rather than analysis.

So it appears social media strongly impacts the journalism profession, altering traditional values and practices.

Social networks like Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat remain the most popular engines for publication and interaction.

But actual use has declined.

Five years ago with the first Social Journalism study, 77 percent of participants said they used microblogs like Twitter and Snapchat regularly for work. That number dropped to 67 percent this year.

Cision 2017 Social Journalism Study

The Fine Print

Cision and Canterbury Christ Church University conducted this online survey about the uses, behaviors, attitudes and perceptions of social media among journalists. Respondents were taken from Cision’s media databases of more than 1.5 million global influencers.  This report takes a closer look at the United States and is based on 257 responses from journalists and media professionals collected April and May 2017.

Click here to see the news release on PR Newswire for Journalists. For the full study and its findings, you can also download the white paper.

Christine Cube is a senior audience relations manager with PR Newswire and freelance writer. Follow her at

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