Twitter is turning to local broadcast television news in order to provide credible information during breaking news events like yesterday’s school shooting in Florida.
According to BuzzFeed, Twitter put its local news initiative to use yesterday, streaming coverage from local Miami broadcasters of the deadly school shooting Wednesday alongside users’ timelines. Twitter has formed partnerships with local stations in order to provide the footage.
"We're continuing to work on new ways we can surface credible and relevant information to help people stay informed. By pairing live video with the conversation on Twitter, there is no faster way to see what’s happening in the world," said Twitter video GM Kayvon Beykpour in a statement obtained by BuzzFeed News.
Twitter’s increased use of local news as a credible information source comes after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg vowed to surface more local news in users’ feeds in order to provide more “high quality, trusted news.”
“People consistently tell us they want to see more local news on Facebook. Local news helps us understand the issues that matter in our communities and affect our lives. Research suggests that reading local news is directly correlated with civic engagement. People who know what's happening around them are more likely to get involved and help make a difference,” said Zuckerberg in a Facebook post.
According to Pew Research, local TV news viewership declined some last year but still leads other news sources including national network and cable news. About 37% of respondents for Pew’s survey said they often get their news from local television, down from 46% in 2016. In 2017, 26% of people said they often get their news from the networks (down from 30% in 2016) and 28% said they often turn to cable news (down from 31% in 2016).