Twitter users are not many but they are loud. With their discourse on the platform, they have great influence on the coverage of “traditional media.” In his study , Dr. Sascha Hölig observed active Twitter users and recognised interesting characteristics they have. Some of them were not very flattering. Journalists should be aware of this when using Twitter as a source for their research.
Only about 1% of the population in Germany uses this platform every day. Of this one per cent, the vast majority are passive spectators only. Those who actively participate in the discourse, tweet themselves and comment on the tweets of others are, therefore, a small minority. Moreover, they are particularly opinionated, extroverted and show tendencies to narcissism.
However, this minority on Twitter has great influence. After all, this network is particularly popular with journalists and Twitter discourses find their way quickly into “traditional media.” How legitimate is it to be guided by a minority when covering a story? Does the orientation towards Twitter contribute to the waning trust in the “traditional media”? What does Twitter mean for journalists in Germany? These questions will be addressed by Dr. Sascha Hölig and Johanna Sebauer in der 36th episode of the BredowCast.
The study by Dr. Sascha Hölig is available at the eLibrary des Nomos Verlag free of charge.