By GABRIELLA SHOFER
With the transformation of news reporting to an online medium, traditional forms of breaking the news have been replaced by new, constantly updated platforms. The pervasiveness of these platforms is enhanced by their interactivity.
However, while in the past the online news environment was dominated by the same news corporations that controlled print news journalism, recently the online shift has enabled new forms of news websites to emerge.
One particular website that has infiltrated the online news arena and is fighting to claim its place in the list of reputable news sources is Buzzfeed. Originally, Buzzfeed’s main purpose was providing information that already existed on the Internet in an entertaining and engaging format. However, after establishing Buzzfeed News, the website has transitioned into breaking news in a similar manner to other online news sources.
Buzzfeed appeals to a younger audience through its informal format. The high use of images, videos and gifs presents human interest news stories in an compelling way. This is furthered by the ability for users to comment on the stories, often leading to incredibly high levels of shares for many news articles.
This highlights the main attribute that sets Buzzfeed apart from its competitors, the way that it capitalizes on the blurred boundary between print and online media that has been created by social media.
However, while this format has gained popularity with the younger generation, which consists of heavy social media users who favor interactive articles, the lack of a traditional news format can force readers to question the credibility of the news reported.