Loss of social media leads to news gap

Mark Monroe
Opinion Staff Writer
mmonroe1@unca.edu

 

With the popular video app Vine on its way out and Facebook’s population on the decline, a void exists along the social media spectrum. Platforms like MySpace and Yik Yak have either already faded from the public sphere or are following suit. With more social media outlets drying up, it begs the question, “Which sites will be left and what will happen to the news cycle should they disappear entirely?”

Twitter and Facebook provide a sufficient base for people to share and create news stories and multimedia creations from all over the world at all intervals of the day. The intersection between the social and global spheres were able to overlap and bridge communities no matter the distance between them. Vine’s recent retirement shows the finite life of all social media sources.

As technology and society evolve there has to be room for growth or at least some sort of expansion to utilize media in a way beneficial to society. The news sphere relies on social media to transmit information in a timely manner in a form more globally accessible. As the outlets die off, the news media must continue to find ways of retaining a presence outside of the televised media.

Television is a one-way source of information in relation to the consumer. While there can be many people at once on television, there is no personal input from the viewer. Social media allows for a two-way stream of communication between the news providers and the consumer, which allows for outside input and refinement catered to the individual.

Nobody ever turned to Vine to get any pertinent information or hard-hitting journalism. However, there was still a shared community of approximately 200 million users which provided entertainment, one of the many functions of social media. It gave people a platform to express themselves across all cultures and mindsets.

Of these 200 million users, many were able to make a decent profit off of their videos. Those users managed to create a decent revenue stream out of their videos which never lasted more than seven seconds. Giving many an opportunity and outlet to aid themselves and Vine at the same time..

Even though the uploaded Vines will remain for archival purposes, it will soon resemble online ruins similar to outdated MySpace accounts reminding us of what used to be popular. The problem with a technology-adapted-society is its hunger to constantly consume information and search for the next big thing or fad to latch onto. While some mediums still hold relevance, none of them last forever due to the constant waverings of society.

Vine’s termination displays how social media’s presence can and does shrink despite its massive audience. Because this void creates a gap in the information cycle, more than just the news outlets could be harmed — the consumer could also suffer. If global ties are severed so are the bridges of information which they have created.

Not everyone can access a television and not everyone can access the internet, so certain people must obtain their information wherever they can, however they can. If social media were to disappear completely there would be many without any way of obtaining information. While it would not be the entire global population, it would be more than expected.

Social media became crucial in the modern age and its presence is not going anywhere soon. If anything it will instantly become subjected to updates to society’s aid or potential detriment. Because of the uncertainty with which it can be utilized, there needs to be more effort put into media outlets beyond social media which can carry out the same purpose lest we devolve into another dark age of information.

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