Social Media Communication News 1(3) #smc2021 #smm2020

Social Media Communication in the News: Real-Time Discussion Starters

Facebook apparently spent $11.2 million for its one-minute #SuperBowl television advertisement.

CMO Antonio Lucio said the spot focused on Facebook Groups:"What we've done here, rather cleverly, is feature 12 different groups that all share an interest in 'rocks' in some shape, way, or form."

Lucio told Business Insider that it was rock themed, "The ad ended with, 'Whatever you rock, there is a group for you'" (@businessinsider - 2020, February 3).

Meanwhile, a NodeXL social network analysis found that most of the top Twitter hashtags were sponsored "hash-flags," including #superbowl, #shakira, #pepsihalftime, and #jlo.

Question: Which Super Bowl advertisement had the most play within your social network?

Social Media Sites Are Distrusted As News Sources 
A new Pew Research Center study found that none of the major social media sites had 20 percent trust for Election 2020 news. 

"Indeed, Facebook, the most widely used of the six social media sites examined when it comes to getting political and election news, is distrusted by about six-in-ten U.S. adults (59%). That includes almost equal percentages of Democrats and independents who lean Democratic (59%) and Republicans and independents who lean Republican (62%). Close to half of all U.S. adults also say they distrust Twitter (48%), and about four-in-ten (42%) distrust Instagram" (para. 3, @pewreasearch - 2020, January 29). 

"In Facebook’s case, 13% of Republicans and Republican leaners say they trust the social media site, while 62% say they distrust it. The gap is also large among Democrats and Democratic leaners, with 17% expressing trust and 59% distrust... The numbers aren’t much different for Twitter, where distrust exceeds trust for Republicans (51% vs. 9%) and for Democrats (46% vs. 15%). The data is similar for Instagram (45% distrust vs. 5% trust among Republicans, and 41% distrust vs. 7% trust among Democrats)"(paras. 11-12).

Question: What would lead you to trust or distrust a Facebook post or tweet? 

Students and Social Media
Twitter took away and handed over a college student's access to his parody account mocking the university. Business Insider reports that a SUNY Geneseo student complained in tweets that he had been outed, amid claims that the school hacked his email and removed all tweets (@businessinsider - 2020, February 3).

Question: How could the First Amendment be used in a lawsuit against a university that took control of a student's Twitter account?

In Case You Missed It
While the Facebook CEO worried about protection of First Amendment freedom, "Twitter and Pinterest are taking new steps to root out voting misinformation designed to suppress participation in the November elections" (@AP - 2020, January 31).

Question: How should we best protect core political free speech on social media sites? 

SMC news is curated for Social Media Communication: Concepts, Practices, Data, Law and Ethics, third edition (2021).

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