The Big Lead “surveyed 54 sports media twitter users anonymously about their thoughts and consumption” of the social-media platform, and the results are pretty interesting.
Writer Ty Duffy spends three times as many words talking about “What is wrong with Twitter?” as he does on “What is right with Twitter?” That makes the piece feel more negative than what Duffy reports are the findings of the Big Lead’s survey.
Yes, Twitter can be an addictive time-suck. It can be a negative space full of trolls and jerks and worse. It can be susceptible to mobs and groupthink. It can help a lie travel around the world before the truth gets its boots on. Respondents mention all of those things, but they also said that Twitter has had a positive effect on sports coverage.
Seventy percent of them said that, while only 13 percent said it had had a negative impact. They also talked about how Twitter is a dynamite news-gathering tool and an enabler of social interaction. As Duffy writes:
Twitter has eroded barriers between media members and their audience, their fellow colleagues and, in some cases, potential sources.
It would be hard to imagine a place where so many people congregate that doesn’t have its downside and annoyances. But less than a decade after its founding and a mere five years after I first signed on, I can’t imagine being either a sports fan or a journalist without Twitter. I can barely remember either.