Press Release

04 December 2013

Nearly all UK journalists use social media for their professional work on a daily basis and almost half say they would be unable to work without it, according to the latest annual Social Journalism Study from Canterbury Christ Church and Cision.

The survey also revealed that two thirds of journalists spend up to 2 hours per day using different social media platforms. Twitter came out of the study as the most important social media tool with 92% of respondents using it regularly for work. The biggest increase in use was LinkedIn, with a 30% increase over the last two years.

Other outcomes from the 2013 study show that the most popular form of communication for PR practitioners to communicate with journalists was by email, second is over the telephone and the third is via social media. However, when asked which communication channel they would prefer to be contacted on, journalists stated that social media is their first choice.

Kristine Pole, Senior Lecturer in Marketing at Canterbury Christ Church University added: “Journalists are clearly avid users of social media and the level of use is nearing saturation for most sourcing, publishing and networking activities with verifying and monitoring catching up fast. This year was the ‘Year of Twitter’ as it was reported as being the most used amongst all the platforms and the one tool which saw the largest increase in use since last year.

“Over 80% of journalists agreed that they are more engaged with their audience due to social media but with 25% stating it hasn’t increased their productivity questions remain whether social media will really help journalists in their work.”

Respondents were generally positive about the impact of social media on their work, on the relationship with their audience, and on the ways in which they gather information. This view is reflected in 23% to 11% percentage drop in just three years of journalists believing that social media would lead to the death of their profession. Nonetheless, worries over privacy and Big Data continued to rise, while online trolling also emerged as an area of concern.

Dr Ágnes Gulyás, Reader in the Department of Media, Art and Design at Canterbury Christ Church University said: “In the UK, journalist’s use of social media is still expanding, while in some countries, such as the US or France, we see some areas of social media use stagnating.

“Our study revealed that there is a stronger segmentation of social media users in the UK with heavy users on one end and more passive, low level users on the other. Compared to last year the five main types of professional social media still exist but in different proportions.”

Kester Ford, Head of Product Marketing for Cision UK said: “We can see from the study that journalists are using more social media platforms for a wider variety of purposes than ever before, including sourcing information, engaging with readers, communicating with PR practitioners, and, especially, for self-publishing and promotion of content.”

Notes to Editor

Other key findings included:

  • The expansion of social media use is also reflected in the number of followers journalists have on their preferred social media site, with the averages having risen significantly.
  • More than half the respondents through that social media improved their productivity.

Canterbury Christ Church University

Canterbury Christ Church University is a modern university with a particular strength in higher education for the public services.

With nearly 20,000 students across Kent and Medway, its courses span a wide range of academic and professional subject areas.

  • 94% of our most recent UK graduates were in employment or further studies six months after completing their studies*.
  • We are the number one choice for local people looking to study at university in Kent (2012 UCAS).
  • We are one of the South East’s largest providers of education, training and skills leading to public service careers.

*2011/12 Destination of Leavers from Higher Education survey


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Last edited: 14/12/2018 22:16:00