Twitter: The ultimate news source?


The Internet has revolutionized the way people communicate with one another. This is an undisputed and well-known fact.

But I’d like to argue that social media, and more specifically Twitter, has begun to revolutionize the field of journalism.

Since its beginnings in 2006, Twitter has taken the digital world by storm. In spite of the skeptics, it grew in popularity at a record pace and has even been accredited with “launching what has been referred to as the “microblogging” phenomenon.”

Backing up a bit for my less tech-savvy readers, Twitter is a social media site through which people can create a profile for free and post messages of 140 characters or less about things going on in their lives. These messages are called “tweets.” People can “follow” their friends, family, favorite companies/brands, and news organizations to keep up with what’s going on in their lives.

Now, I say that Twitter is quite possibly becoming the ultimate news source for a number of reasons.

First, the obvious reason being that people no longer have to tune in to their local news station on the radio or television for the news. They also don’t have to wait for the newspaper to come the next morning. They can simply go their favorite news station’s Twitter account to keep up with what’s going on.

Not only is this a more effective way of distributing news, since it is reaching a mass of people at once; but it also is efficient because people can find out about news almost as soon as it happens.

But Twitter also acts as a news source for journalists and reporters.

By scrolling through their timeline, journalists can see what people are talking about and what the big news stories are at the moment. If there is a big event or big story occurring somewhere across the country, news companies can simply send out their people to go get the story instead of waiting to hear about it via another outlet.

In my opinion, these are all huge signs alluding to the fact that Twitter and other social media outlets are going to begin dominating the field of journalism and playing a larger role sooner than we think.

Clickbait changes news … for worse


The world of news has certainly been changing rapidly with the onset of the Internet.

Unfortunately, I would have to argue it has changed for the worse. This is mainly because of a phenomenon known as “clickbait.”

It is nearly impossible to scroll through a Facebook feed these days without seeing a headline reading something like “You’ll Never Guess What These Guys Found While Digging in their Yard!” That’s clickbait. That’s also a real headline. The “crazy thing” they dug up was an animal bone. With a headline that provocative I assumed it would be a lost monument or an ancient artifact.

Of course, the entire reasoning behind clickbait is to gain website hits. The more hits a site gets, the more advertising money it receives. It’s an understandable business strategy, but sensationalizing mundane stories that can hardly be called news causes more important matters to be ignored. The reason true news stories get lost in the depths of the Internet is twofold: their headlines either aren’t “intriguing” enough to merit a click, or they are simply drowned out by the sheer number of sensationalist news websites.

One such website, Buzzfeed has become so notorious for this, that noted faux news source The Onion created an entire website called “ClickHole” to mock it. It is both funny and sad knowing that if you put the sites’ respective headlines next to each other without the domain name, it would be impossible to tell which was real and which was fake.

Internet news has simply become “who can write the most eye-catching headline” instead of “who can write the most accurate and compelling news story.” At this point, it is impossible to tell if the internet will reach a breaking point with clickbait, but for now it reigns supreme. I can only hope that this is another trend that will fall by the wayside and that true news will return as king once more.

Journalism: One of the most dangerous jobs


What comes to mind when we think about the most dangerous jobs in the world? We may think of firefighters, astronauts, bodyguards, men working for the military or perhaps fishermen, but few of us would believe that journalists face greater dangers for reporting the news.

According to the United Nations, “Journalism is one of the most dangerous professions in the world.”

Journalists go out to the streets to explore and report what is happening. Unfortunately, in this profession, the stories covered may result in kidnapping, assault and even death of journalists and their staff.

Nowadays, journalism is more dangerous than ever. The cruel beheading of South Florida native Steven Satloff and James Foley in Syria are great examples of this risky job. Covering a war is obviously a dangerous task, but being brutally killed in front of a camera just for saying the truth and reporting the news, is unacceptable.

In the recent years, Syria has shown to be the deadliest country for journalists to operate. According to the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), at least 70 other journalists have been killed and more than 80 journalists have been kidnapped in Syria, some of which cases are not publicized. CPJ estimates that approximately 20 journalists are missing in Syria and many journalists are still believed to be kept by the Islamic State.

Navi Pillay, the UN high commissioner for human rights, said “journalists report on human rights violations and bad governance, give voice to the victims and the oppressed, and contribute towards raising awareness of human rights issues, and this service deserves better protection.”

Sadly, journalists have less protection than any other risky job. People don’t realize this until they see innocent journalists that have been arrested, kidnapped or murdered.

In these years, the death of a journalist is usual. Last year, at least three dozen reporters were murdered in their jobs. They didn’t have a uniform or carry a gun, they were simply doing their job; asking questions, looking at records and reporting the truth.

Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Egypt, Somalia, Brazil, Ukraine and Russia have been considered the most dangerous countries for journalists in the last years.

In 2014, an aggressive fire killed more journalists than American soldiers in Afghanistan. In the same year, three Al-Jazeera journalists were convicted and sentenced to prison for seven years with terrorism-related charges in Egypt.

Another shocking case back in 2001, was Jose Luis Ortega Mata, an editor of a weekly newspaper in Mexico. He wrote an article on drug traffickers funding the election campaigns of Mexican politicians. Too much coincidence that days after his article was released, someone fired two bullets into his head without any reason.

Cases like this occur on a daily basis. Some are published and some are not and it is hard to make justice over these journalist’s deaths.

Reporting requires curiosity, written and verbal communication skills, objectiveness and passion for the truth. But what it mostly requires is courage.

Reporter’s work is to inform the citizens by telling the news, which is the material we use to think about the word’s happenings beyond ourselves. As any other job, journalism doesn’t deserve threatening to those who practice it. Needless to say, people with a journalism profession deserve more protection for informing the world.

The real problem in the Ray Rice scandal


On Monday, the National Football League announced the indefinite suspension of Baltimore Raven’s running back Ray Rice after new video footage surfaced of Rice punching his then-fiancée in an elevator.

But more than just the NFL’s disciplinary action against Rice, the media coverage of late has been focused on one person: NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. From opinion articles, to interviews and tweets, many people are calling for the resignation of Goodell because of how he handled the domestic violence situation.

While I think the NFL did an awful job at initially reprimanding Rice by ordering only a two game suspension, I don’t necessarily think Goodell is the one at which the public should be mad. Yes, I personally think the first video was more than enough evidence to penalize Rice more severely and send a strong message against domestic abuse, but many people are forgetting that Goodell wasn’t the one who beat his wife.

He is not the problem. Ray Rice and the thousands of other domestic abusers are the problem.

Goodell may not have done a good job the first time at implementing punishment, but he and the NFL at least admitted to their wrongdoing. Unless more evidence surfaces that shows they definitely had more inside knowledge of Rice’s actions, then that may change the situation. But the continual discussion of Goodell’s handlings is overshadowing the main issue here: domestic abuse. I hope that, as this story develops, the public attention moves toward combating the issue of domestic violence because it is not just the NFL’s problem, it’s society’s.

Apple’s new iPhone 6 debuts


The new iPhone 6 was finally shown to the world on Tuesday of this week. Pre-orders start on Sept. 12.

Screen Shot 2014-09-11 at 1.58.14 AMThe iPhone 6 is 4.7 inches diagonally and 6.9 mm wide.

The iPhone 6 Plus is 5.5 inches diagonally and 7.1 mm wide.

Moreover, the iPhone 6 Plus has a full 1080p HD display than a 720p HD display than iPhone 6 which apple calls it Retina HD.

The iPhone 6’s Wi-Fi speeds are up to three times faster than those of the iPhone 5s. The iPhone 6 also has faster LTE than the iPhone 5s. Some details on the landscape is also improved, like, some apps, mail, and weather.

Apple also advanced its iPhone camera. The all-new feature on the camera called Focus Pixels, which has an eight megapixel iSight camera, a 1.5u pixel sensor and a f/2.2 aperture lens. Apple says, “That’s a nerdy way of saying, we’ve made the iSight camera a lot better.”

The new iPhone’s body is larger and more rounded edges make the sizes feel good. And Apple CEO Tim Cook maintains that the new appearance make it more comfortable for people to hold it. However, many people argue than the new look make the iPhone 6 looks ugly.

Every time, Apple makes new products, a side of people argue that the products are worse than before and Apple’s creation begins to decline. But Apple’s product is still the best-selling around the world and iPhone 6 is the best among the telephones nowadays.

New iPhones are available in gold, silver, and space grey, and are available in 16 GB, 64 GB, and 128 GB capacities. The iPhone 6 pricing starts at $199, while the iPhone 6 Plus pricing starts at $299.