| NAA mediaXchange is the largest annual gathering of industry executives in North America, offering unprecedented networking opportunities that combine an exchange of information and ideas with programming designed to generate results. The conference is designed to provide valuable ideas and insights to help newspaper professionals grow audience and revenue for their print and digital products. Sessions highlight leading-edge thinking about media strategies, successes in product and revenue development, new ideas and innovation inside and outside the industry, and tactics and techniques to employ in print and digital.
Twitter co-founder says information sharing has positive effect, opens a mobile audience - #NAAmXc11
By Aida Ahmed
The mediaXchange 2011 conference kicked off with a look at how Twitter helps disseminate news through a very mobile platform.
As NAA Chairman Mark Contreras introduced the first session, he said some of the organization's primary goals are to promote the value of newspapers and an industry with a wide digital shopping experience.
With a recent Pew study revealing that about half of originally reported journalism is done by newspapers, the session focused on how the social media platform Twitter helps - not hurts - the news industry.
"Anybody can publish, but no one has the responsibility that we do," Contreras said.
Biz Stone of Twitter agreed. The man who co-founded Twitter five years ago said he doesn't worry so much about false information shared on the platform, but he knows it exists. Stone said he's seen an overwhelming positive impact with the open exchange of information and that Twitter has become a user-regulated outlet.
>> WATCH: Biz Stone discusses Twitter and breaking news, the 140-character limit, demographics of Twitter users, and more
Twitter currently has 200 million registered accounts with 500,000 new sign-ups daily around the globe. Initially, Twitter was created for mobile use. Stone said about 40 percent of usage is via mobile.
"We started on the SMS network," he said. "It represents a much larger market to build on than the Internet. The combination of the two makes for a much wider audience.
With the three areas of integration into media - journalism, the news consumer and the news maker - Stone said more journalists are curating trusted sources to do their jobs, as well as sending out tweets.
>> WATCH: Biz Stone talks about how Twitter is influencing the media industry
"While Twitter may break news very quickly, we don't go into detail," he said.
He said he believes links give tweets a richer context and the character limit forces people to get creative. That's why, he added, the 140-character limit is here to stay. Meta-information can be shared via attachments of images, video, time and even location.
As for the future of Twitter, Stone said it will stick to its original platform.
"The big thing is going back to our roots, which is mobile," he said. "I hope Twitter will be available on any phone globally in the next five years."
He acknowledged the marketing potential for companies, as well as the impact Twitter has on breaking news. Twitter, which was first used heavily at the 2007 South By Southwest Interactive festival in Austin, Texas, has increasingly been a factor in major national and world events. In 2008, Twitter emerged as an important tool in the political arena; more recently, Twitter users have provided news on protests in the Middle East.
Stone said at the end of the day, Twitter's goal is to serve users and to provide value to everyone on that platform.
>> WATCH: Full video of Q&A with Twitter Co-Founder Biz Stone
Mar 26 2011, 12:32 PM
Aida Ahmed is a student at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Find out more about Aida and the other students reporting live from NAA's mediaXchange here.
About Amanda Knowles
Amanda Knowles is Web & Social Media Manager at the Newspaper Association of America. Before coming to NAA, Amanda spent four years working in print journalism, both at the college and professional level. She has worked as a copy editor and news page designer for two daily newspapers in northwestern Pennsylvania, The Erie Times-News and The Meadville Tribune. Most recently, she collaborated on The American Observer, the online magazine edited and produced by graduate journalism students at American University in Washington, D.C. Amanda believes strongly in the secure future of the newspaper, and is excited to be a participant in the movement to integrate traditional print media into the burgeoning digital world.