Mashable says Twitter and Facebook are promoting quality journalism.
A recent survey of tweets with links to stories in the iPad-only newspaper the Daily demonstrated people are more likely to tweet hard news than softer stories, the article says.
The incentive to share quality content is simple: a person may be more likely to read gossip, but they may share a news piece to shape their followers’ perception of them.
They may even view it as a public service. I tend to believe it’s usually the former rather than the more altruistic latter.
As a result, news organizations producing quality journalism are being rewarded with accelerated growth in social referral traffic — in some cases, growing at a much faster pace than search referrals.
More notably, social media is enabling the citizenry to be active participants in producing journalism by giving them platforms to publish to the social audience.
This has made journalism more efficient and, in many ways, enhanced the quality of storytelling.
The post goes on to demonstrate how social media could provide a more engaged reader.
In a recent analysis of Mashable’s social and traffic data, I found that Facebook and Twitter visitors spent 29 per cent more time on Mashable.com and viewed 20 per cent more pages than visitors arriving via search engines. This may suggest a more engaged or exploratory reader, at least in terms of how much time they spend reading the content.
The article also predicts how Google’s +1, which adds a social recommendation layer to Google searches, and how +1 could influence the stories people share by ‘likes’ and tweets.
Though +1 isn’t a social network, it is certainly a big step toward building one. But perhaps most important is its implications for quality. The number of +1s on a story link affects its placement in search results.