If you define yourself as a “newspaper,” social media is bad for you. You are going to lose. There is no way around that. But if you frame your world differently, the scene changes.

Like the universe, journalism is expanding. AP plays a shrinking role in that universe, at the head end of the reporting process on primarily world and national news. Journalism used to be describable as “gather, order, and present” — or reporting, writing and publishing. AP lives in the first two layers, disconnected from and sometimes baffled by the rest.

But that’s not the process any more. Journalism doesn’t end with publication of a story, or even necessarily begin with the reporter. Journalism now is a dynamic and continuous process that can begin with the “people formerly known as the audience” and continues after publication in a public, social interaction in which the community discusses, digests, processes, adds to, remixes and redistributes information.

One-way journalism was an illusion of the 20th century. It’s over. Past tense. It was illusory anyway. Social processes existed even when we didn’t see them.

Practicing journalism in this century requires social media literacy and engagement in all the layers. Yes, it’s a time suck, along with everything else. As an old copy editor once told me, “that’s why they call it work.”

Steve Yelvington, long-time journalist and media strategist, reacting (on his blog) to this tweet:

AP’s Liz Sidoti: Social media is a “time suck” and threatening young journalists’ understanding of reporting basics. 

Read more about it, from Steve Buttry, here.

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