Last week, The Associated Press updated its social media guidelines to address the issue of retweets. Since then, the new guidelines’ concern with bias and objectivity sparked much online debate from reporters, social media enthusiasts, and media critics alike. David Carr of The New York Times Media Decoder blog tweeted: “AP to staff: Don’t retweet anything with an opinion. http://bit.ly/rKbgDE Good luck with that.”
Jeff Sonderman at Poynter introduced the idea of a “neutral retweet,” placing “NT” at the beginning of a retweet to convey: “I do not necessarily agree with this statement, but I thought it was notable enough to call to your attention.” While many in the Twittersphere concurred with this idea, for some, it brought up more fundamental issues of objectivity and journalism.
At GigaOm, Matthew Ingram lamented the requirement that journalists pretend not to have opinions, saying this suggests, “viewers or readers are too stupid to figure out where the truth lies.” He argues that these social media policies actually make things worse, and has recommended positive social media policies that tell journalists how to tweet instead of what not to tweet. Read more