I’ve just read the CNN article “Officials: Social networking providing crucial info from Iran.”
I’m relieved to know that the world is finding out more about what’s happening in Iran through social networking websites like Twitter and Facebook.
Even the US State Department and CNN itself are relying on these websites to know more about the latest developments in Iran, according to the article.
I have one question though: how do these organizations filter information sent via these websites?
I would like to know how an organization like CNN makes sure that texts, photos and videos posted on or sent through social networking sites are real.
These days, anything can be doctored, or “sexed up.”
The best media organizations are no strangers to fabricated stories. I remember the incident involving former New York Times reporter Jayson Blair.
In an article, the New York Times said Blair had committed “widespread” acts of “fabrication and plagiarism.” (More about Blair’s journalistic fraud)
A reporter who used to work for a prestigious news organization had concocted stories. It only means that practically anyone can do it.
Freedom of expression
I’m not saying that information coming from social networking sites is unreliable.
All I’m trying to point out is that, it’s so easy to come up with just about anything these days.
I’m a staunch supporter of freedom of expression.
I should be, because expressing myself is one of my passions. That’s why I have this blog.
Not only that, my bread and butter depends almost entirely on freedom of expression.
However, I’m also all for verifying statements, especially the ones that are passed off as facts.
An explanation of the filtering process done by government agencies and news organizations would be a good idea. I would really be interested in reading that.
Links would be appreciated.