Sports journalism and social media don’t mix well

Sports journalists are different than most other journalists; they’ve usually been working for a number of years, starting out covering a smaller, local team before working their way up to covering a professional team.

So it would make sense that they don’t like to use new technology, such as social media, at their jobs.

An article found at Harvard University’s Nieman Lab goes over a report of a survey done by Oklahoma State University, and informs us that sports journalists don’t like having to spend tons of time on the internet.

Edward Kian, one of the writer’s of the report for Oklahoma State University, states “the general consensus was that they didn’t like interacting on social media, and they didn’t like all the time they had to spend on there.”

They also had a lot of dislike for bloggers, particularly because bloggers threw the hierarchy of sports reporting into disarray.

A majority of the reporters interviewed felt that blogging was not “real reporting” and that bloggers hurt the credibility of “real reporters,” the study said — noting that some now feel bloggers have been marginalized because of the popularity of Twitter. Still, the rancor among the newspaper journalists, including this reporter from a mid-sized newspaper in the west, was quite clear:

To be a blogger, you don’t need to write well. You don’t need to know any facts; you just need to put some words down. And there’s certainly no accountability. Some people could say “so and so is getting fired.” So if you get it wrong you can just write “we got bad information, it’s all good.” Unless the guy you reported wrongly about does anything about it, then you’re free to do whatever you wanna do.

I love the First Amendment, but there probably needs to be somebody policing somehow of the Internet — at least for people who claim to be journalists. You want to get all the facts right. If I wanna know something about NHL [National Hockey League] free agency, I’m going to NHL.com or ESPN.com; I’m not going to “Billy Bob’s Hockey Blog.” I hate freaking bloggers.

 

Technology is always going to change things, and there will be people who resist that change. In this instance, those people just happen to be sports journalists.

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