CNN versus Twitter

September 28, 2010 § Leave a comment

CNN has successfully used microblogging site Twitter to reach  1.3 million followers on the networks main account and 3.5 million on its breaking news account.

The news network’s Twitter account provides numerous updates on hourly events, and links to stories and video found on the network’s website. Several CNN reporters have individual account and are often retweeted by the main twitter account. Rick Sanchez is the most notable CNN personality to embrace the microblogging site. He currently has about 350,000 followers.

Sanchez uses Twitter to provide his viewers with a daily interactive list. His Twitter account acts as a forum for his followers where a wide variety of topics are under discussion at any time. Twitter provides the reporters with an outlet to step away from the network’s image and give followers a glimpse into who they are as people. This allows for the audience to relate to the anchor.

CNN anchor Don Lemon also uses Twitter as a way to reach his core audience, often exchanging tweets with his followers and colleagues.

Twitter or microblogging seems to be the natural evolution of the cable news network and acts as an intellectual grandchild to CNN and the Web. CNN gave 24/7 news coverage to viewers in the 1980s and Twitter givers minute by minute coverage to the current generation of news consumers.

CNN and the unverified ideology of Twitter are ethically at odds most of the time. The most notably case was the Iranian elections, where Twitter’s flood like approach to breaking news was quite different from CNN tight lip approach to the controversy that was taking place in Iran.

Although CNN has 1.3 million followers, the network still has not embraced the ability of microblogging completely. There are rarely any breaking news tweets on streaming from the main CNN account. The news network decided to create a separate Twitter account for breaking news  CCNBRK. But I would call the move just a cheap gimmick to get you to follow the organization twice.

If you search for Twitter on CNN’s homepage the search end brings up results that have nothing to do with CNN. This is a huge miss step for the News network.

~Juan Rodriguez

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