The Powers of Social Media

Last week, I opened my computer and logged onto the Internet, which is an occurrence multiple times in day and I logged onto Facebook. I noticed my Newsfeed was full of my Journalism friends, and a few professors, commenting on how the AP Stylebook changed Web site to website. I then opened my Tweetdeck and noticed how everyone, again mainly PR and Journalism friends, commented on this change in the AP Stylebook.

For those of you who are not journalism nerds, the AP or Associated Press, issues a stylebook to explain the manner in which words and other grammar items should be in news articles and other printed media. For the longest time, the AP stylebook went against the rest of the world and made you write the word as Web site instead of the way everyone else writes it as website. This often served as a frustration for myself and any other journalism students.

It honestly amazes me how much has been written on the web, including social media sites, about this new change. I decided to Google this and I found this blog on Mashable about the new entry. On the side, it stated that the blog was retweeted 3042 times and was shared on Facebook 5437 times. This really shocked me! I think it shocked me not only because added together that would be more than 8000 times but also because I did not realize that many people would have honestly cared.

This also made me think about how social media helps spread news in a very short amount of time. I know people talk about how the news cycle is only minutes or even seconds these days where it used to be a 24-hour news cycle. I guess I just never personally noticed it before now. It is always cool when you see in real life the things they teach in college..

In addition, this made me think about how social media allows people the platform to share small tidbits of information. Before the invention of Facebook and Twitter, a person could share a small bit of information, like this change in the AP Style book, with those close to them like family or friends. If those people happen to not be in your field of study so they might not know and or care about this information. Now social media offers a platform to share interesting things with those in your field who know, understand and probably care.

Social media and its powers and effects continue to surprise almost every day.


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