Facebook Inc and Twitter Inc are both supplanting traditional news media to become the primary source of news. The Pew Research Center reports that the number of Americans that obtain their news from Twitter and Facebook is on the increase. Nonetheless, Facebook still has an edge over Twitter in the news space as another report notes.
The Pew Research report holds that large portions of Twitter and Facebook users obtain their news from the social network platforms. 63% of Twitter users read locates news on the platform and 63% of Facebook users see the platform as a source of news. This confirms the smartness of bullish bets that both Twitter and Facebook are placing on the news space in recent times.
Twitter and Facebook emerge on news
Sharing breaking news has been Twitter’s sole edge starting from the days of the plane landing in then Hudson. Twitter is the place to discuss breaking events with like-minded people – not necessarily friends. Facebook has been the main source of social interactions where people connect with family and friends.
The Pew Research report notes, “As more social networking sites recognize and adapt to their role in the news environment, each will offer unique features for news users, and these features may foster shifts in news use.”
Over time, both platforms have emerged as important players in the news space. Twitter is already pushing the frontier to dominate news with its Project Lightning. Facebook is also rattling Google’s dominance with Instant Articles in a move that will change the face of news forever.
The number of Twitter and Facebook users that find news on the platforms has shown a decent increase in two years. In 2013, 52% of Twitter users get their news from the platform while only 47% of Facebook users find news there.
Facebook might be the clear leader in news
Despite the fact that both Twitter and Google are breaking out into the news space, Facebook seems to have an edge over Twitter. A study just released by ShareThis in collaboration with Starcom Mediavest Group (SMG) shows that Facebook users are more likely to share a news item with their network than Twitter users.
For instance, Facebook rakes in 38% of all sharing referral traffic. Twitter has a tie with Email for second with 17% each. The study also shows that Facebook controls 56% of all shared content (up from 45% in 2010) while Twitter controls 8% of all shared content (down from 12% in 2010).