Posts tagged ‘stats’

April 19, 2012

Guess what…Social media is NOT replacing traditional journalism [Infographic]

Far too often I see stories, comments, and infographics (see below) about how social media is taking over journalism. This simply isn’t the case. Social media can’t replace journalism – they are just too different. Those who view social media as a threat to journalism are missing the great opportunities it presents.

Social media can help with almost every function in the business of news. I’ve seen it used to: source stories, line up interviews, provide personal photos, drive readership, interact with on-air personalities, do quick viewer polls, connect with customers, and the list goes on.

When you really think about it, journalism ISN’T words on newsprint, voices on airwaves, or pictures on the nightly news. That’s just a description of the traditional distribution model. Journalism is really about telling stories. Accurate, fair, balanced, and interesting stories. It doesn’t matter that I read my news on my smartphone, and my neighbour still buys broadsheet newspapers everyday. The important thing is that we both are still consuming news stories produced by trained professionals.

“Boohoo” stories from the newspaper industry really bug me because they don’t tell the whole story about declining circulations. Who cares if some paper in Seattle is no longer offering a print edition of their paper after more than 140 years of publication? People weren’t buying it in the first place because it was a bunch of ink printed on dead trees. They were buying it for the stories. And this “historic” paper in Seattle is still alive and well online. As long as traditional news outlets are willing to adapt how they deliver stories to the public, and their revenue streams, they will be set up for success. I don’t see this as a decline in “traditional journalism” whatsoever.

Perhaps the social media vs. traditional journalism sentiment comes from the way we talk about how social media relates to journalism. Nobody likes to have the relevance of their job called into question, so I can see how the term “citizen journalism” may have upset a few people in the industry. Perhaps we shouldn’t be calling it “citizen journalism”; instead, call it “citizen reporting” – a bit more accurate.

But citizen reporting has it’s place, and journalists really can’t compete with it: in fact, they shouldn’t even try. Let Twitter  tell me that Dick Clark has passed away – I read the rest of the story on a traditional news website. Facebook can tell me the “who, what, when, where”, details of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, but I look to traditional media to give me a bit more insight on the “why and how” because their journalists have the time, training, and access to newsmakers to be able to write a more fulsome story.

There is no doubt that journalists and news organizations need to continue to adapt, like every other industry. The ones who can’t (or won’t) will be forgotten, but the ones that embrace social media are using it to give them an edge in the business of news gathering and distribution. And to be quite honest, I am certain that I read more newspaper stories in 2012 than ever before because the internet gives me greater access.

The infographic below was released this week by schools.com containing stats on “How social media is replacing journalism.” Take a look, and let me know what you think.

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February 1, 2012

Women share less information about themselves online [Infographic]

In a recent survey by uSamp, it was found that women are more guarded about the information they share online when compared to the habits of men. What I found the most interesting about this study is that men were MUCH more likely to share personal information such as telephone number, mailing address, email address, physical location, education, and even salary.

For me, this infographic raises more questions than provides answers. I want to know:

  • Are men disregarding risk involved in sharing personal information? Or are they less aware of it?
  • Are women more concerned about privacy? Could this be a personal safety issue?
  • Why are women more likely to share their real name, but less likely to share contact information?
  • Why are both men and women still using Myspace?

What do you think? Does your sharing behaviour mirror what this infographic suggests about your gender?

January 17, 2012

Give me wi-fi or I ain’t coming: 60% of college students demand free wi-fi from their schools [Infographic]

With a freshly-minted semester just underway at thousands of post-secondary institutions around the world, www.onlinecolleges.net takes a look at technology usage and the expectations of students walking the hallways of higher-learning this year.  There’s a lot of information in the infographic below, so grab a coffee and settle in for a few minutes. Here are a few things that caught my eye:

Wi-fi internet access is critically important. And so it should be…Here are the numbers:

  • 90% of students feel that wi-fi is as essential to an education as a classroom or a computer
  • 75% of college students say that wi-fi access on college campus helps them get better grades
  • 60% of students would NOT attend an institution unless it had free wi-fi.

The availability of free wi-fi is more often becoming the expectation, not the exception.  I’m always on the prowl for free wi-fi, whether it’s college or university campuses, private businesses who offer a free guest connection, coffee shops, pubs, etc. I consider if a restaurant has free wi-fi when I’m contemplating places to dine. I’ve even emailed to ask about wi-fi so I can blog, watch the game, and perhaps enjoy some hot wings.

In the not-so-distant future, we will see more emphasis on college campus wi-fi performance speeds and up-time. Nothing frustrates me more than when I get an email advising of an “unplanned outage on campus”. Unplanned outages are major inconveniences for college students and faculty, and these outages are a cost of billions of dollars in lost revenue in the private sector, so it should be taken seriously.

Google and Wikipedia are essential sites. 47% of students named Google or Wikipedia as their “one site they can’t do without.” That makes sense. What I find more interesting is that only 8% of students listed Blackboard as their top site. Blackboard is a learning management system that allows professors and students to connect online.  The challenge with Blackboard is that it is only as good as the professor can make it. Sure, a few can really make the tool shine, but I would wager that most students would describe their blackboard experience as a place to view grades and look at old PowerPoints posted by the professor.

Most students don’t want to connect with their professors on social media, but it’s a close split three ways. 39% of students felt that it was not appropriate to friend their instructor, 31% thought it was OK, and 30% didn’t seem to care either way. I imagine that students are choosing to mitigate the risk of sharing their online image with their professor rather than displaying a genuine disinterest in their professor’s content. Perhaps a subscription would work better  in this case.  In the next study, I would be  interested to know how many professors want to connect with their students via social media. That figure may be even more telling.

Technology Use on the College campus
Via: Online Colleges Guide

December 6, 2011

The (sad) state of social media use in small business [Infographic]

Sure, we can all think of great examples of small businesses using social media to connect with customers in new and engaging ways using social media – I’ve blogged about some of them. But earlier this week I came across the infographic below from the good folks at Socialnomics about the feelings some small businesses have when it comes to the social frontier, and a few things jumped out at me:

1. Almost all of the respondents (88%) indicated that social media does or will have an impact on their business. Though small businesses seems to be aware of the impact, the majority (70%) of them will not be making additional investments in social media next year. So they seem to know what’s going on, but are unable, or unwilling, to leverage it.

2. Where’s Foursquare? Of the 63% who reported that they have a social media footprint, only 6% report report using Foursquare. This past year, Foursquare has been reporting booming growth, and they even have the Foursquare Merchant Platform that is designed specifically to help businesses create, track, and manage their customer outreach and rewards programs.

3. Why are you so LinkedIn? This one baffles me. Small businesses report that they use LinkedIn (48%) more than Twitter (37%) and Foursquare (6%) combined. After being baffled for a moment, I began to think through WHY small business are gravitating towards LinkenIn. Perhaps because it is comfortable, it is one of the most “traditional” forms of social media – it’s an online resume surrounded by professional conversations. They may be after some best practices as there are many B2B conversations and information sharing going on the LinkedIn blog and on-page discussion groups. But when you look further down on the infographic, you will notice that businesses report that the top three uses they have for social media are: brand awareness, lead generation, and customer service….not best practices. This could be an example of the actions of business not being in sync with their goals.

There are plenty of other interesting nuggets of information in this infographic, so take a look and feel free to share what really jumps out at you. I’d also be very interested in some more examples of good social media use in small businesses.

Small-Business-Social-Media-Infographic

September 6, 2011

Social media can be your key to better grades this year [Infographic]

Today is the unofficial end of summer in Canada, and many places around the world, as students from kindergarden to post-secondary return to school for another year of study. Social media is often demonized as a classroom (and workplace) distraction that negatively affects students. Early research from the Whittmore School of Business and Economics at the University of New Hampshire shows that this isn’t the case at all. It turns out that social media doesn’t mean lower grades; it actually helps create the environment that encourages discussion and knowledge transfer, ultimately resulting in higher grades for students who engage in social media the most.

This research has been captured in the infographic below, thanks to mastersineducation.org, and a few things really jumped out at me when I first saw it:

1. Better grades: It is interesting to note that this research suggests that better grades aren’t simply tied to whether you use social media or not, but it found that the more hours a student spends using social media the more likely it would be that they had higher grades.

2. Increase of peer-to-peer learning: When teachers integrate social media in the classroom, this research shows learning through discussion increases and students achieve higher grades. Often, this can be as simple as a Facebook page where students can discuss course content and assignments, Twitter accounts to send students reminders, or even YouTube videos of past lectures.

3. Use for education: After social media’s social and entertainment value, this research indicates that the third most common thing students use social media for is education.

Have your grades changed since you began using social media?

January 24, 2011

Booming Foursquare growth: Have you checked in? [Stats]

Yes, I’m sharing another infographic; what can I say? I love these things…

Earlier this week, Foursquare released the infographic below to help demonstrate their meteoric growth in 2010. A few things caught my eye:

3,400% growth: First of all, this number is crazy. Foursquare now has over 6,000,000 users. When I first started using Foursquare early last year, I only had about six friends on my list for about six months. I was able to add venues and capture Mayorships almost everyday. Now I’m getting about six friend requests a week, and it is very hard to remain mayor of a venue, even at the office.

Regional Dominance: Specifically, the American and Canadian North East. Dominating much of the “Top 3” lists are American cities, most notably New York. I guess you would expect this from the fourth largest nation on earth (China, India, Facebook, USA), but the line dividing the continent west of the Gulf of Mexico is pronounced and somewhat unexpected. Also, a shout out to Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand for checking in what looks like as much as, if not more than, the area from Southern California to British Columbia.

Wendy is the Mayor of Wendy’s: Need I say more? Congrats to a lady named Wendy in Madison, Mississippi for holding down the mayorship at Wendy’s Hamburgers. This has inspired me to become Mayor of David’s Tea shop here in Ottawa.

(click for a larger image):

Foursquare 2010 Infographic

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