Is Social Media More Reliable Than Traditional Media?

Gee…who would you believe, the national news anchor or someone on one of your social networking sites?

According to the Harvard Business Review, “the American public assessment of the accuracy of the news media has reached a new low. 63% of American adults say news stories are often inaccurate, compared to 53% in 2007 and 34% in 1985. 70% say that the news media tries to cover up mistakes, and 27% describe the press as “not professional.” Right there is a pretty good reason no one is watching the nightly news. But come on, we do have options don’t we, or do we have to rely on someone pushing their agenda on us? How many times have you listened to the news and only got one side of the story?

According to The Sacred Heart University Polling Institute who released its 3rd survey on, Trust and satisfaction with the news media. Nearly two-fifths of all respondents, 38.1%, said they are reading newspapers less often than they did five years ago. And, nearly half, 45.0%, agreed that the internet is adequately covering for failing newspapers,

Now take social media. Do you think a national anchor would get away with some of the things they say on TV if they had to interact with the social media scene? Afraid not! They would have their head handed to them. Why, because social allows other people to have an opinion and they aren’t afraid to call you out if you’re wrong. Americans aren’t as dumb as the Networks think we are. People are relying more on social. Look at Twitter. You knew about the plane landing in the Hudson, along with photos, long before the mainstream media knew about it. If you really want to know what John Q Public is thinking, you need to get to the streets. Social literally has put “the man on the street” interview back in vogue. Only this time the man isn’t a staged prop.

75%-plus of us use the Internet when we’re looking to buy something and want to do research on it first. Yes, we might look at some manufacturers’ sites for features and benefits. What most people like is a site that has a place where people can leave comments and rate the product from a customer’s view. People trust other people’s experiences and views.

What are your thoughts?


Share this:

0 Comments. Leave a comment

  1. DShad

    Here’s my big caveat – there are a lot of know-nothing bloggers and twitter users out there, who are more than willing to relay every half-cooked conspiracy theory, get-rich-quick scheme, or other useless or even harmful information.

    I think getting honest feedback and opinion about products, companies, and services is EXTREMELY valuable to people who are watching their bottom line. But when using Social Media as a replacement for traditional news or reviews, get a RANGE of opinions from multiple sources, before you trust what you read – theres no editorial review or vetting process in the blog-o-sphere!

  2. Victoria Kamm

    Traditional media was designed as one way advertising and marketing. “Look at me and buy my product or service!” The concept was to sell things consumers didn’t even know they needed and so the seller controlled the entire conversation.

    Social media is a dialogue. That means your customers talk back…or maybe not. In other words THEY control the conversation. That can be a frightening prospect for business owners who are not used to being publicly challenged or openly confronted about a problem or complaint.

    Traditional media such as newspapers can reinforce a business’ message IF anyone sees it. Social media is a huge opportunity for SBOs who want to exploit very specific niches and become enormously influential within those niches.

    Why are so many SMBs resistant to social media? It takes more time than placing traditional ad/commercial/Yellow Pages inserts. They don’t know where they fit in.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *