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Title:How far does Twitter deepen democracy through public engagement? An analysis of journalists' use of Twitter in the Johannesburg newsroom
Author:Daniels, Glenda
Periodical:Journal of African Media Studies (ISSN 1751-7974)
Geographic term:South Africa
social media
Abstract:The use of social media, mainly Twitter, in the Johannesburg newsroom presents an opportunity for the opening up of media spaces to public engagement, thereby deepening democracy. This article, framed through radical democratic theory, is a scrutiny of journalists' use of Twitter. The author uses a content analysis of Twitter feeds, discourse analysis, as well as interviews with journalists and editors to reach some reflective insights. The issues include the following: there is much 'noise' about, and within, Twitter in the newsroom but does this robust public engagement engage more voices, and therefore diversity, into the public sphere of journalism? Or could the world of Twitter in the newsroom, at this present moment, exist as a mainly consensus seeking one, that of the like-minded merely re-affirming each other's views? The argument here, which is open for debate, is that Twitter presents an opportunity to deepen democracy, but at this moment it is limited, as the data gathered from newsrooms in Johannesburg show. Bibliogr., notes, sum. [Journal abstract]