Is Twitter a threat to CNN? Last week, He's smart to be afraid.
CNN President Jeff Zucker, was quoted as saying "Twitter is a frenemy" and "the network uses, relies on, and is scared by, social media."When key moments of the Boston marathon explosion unfolded, millions flocked to, not their televisions, but their smart phones and laptops, for updates. When the suspects were cornered on a quiet, residential street, it was a resident, not a journalist, who documented and shared the events from his upstairs window via Twitter and Skype. And it was Twitter, not a news station or even a press release that announced the end of the manhunt after the second suspect was found hiding in a boat.
Twitter has become the go-to network for immediate updates and information. CNN is forced to make room for this new, feisty kid-on-the-block with an astounding ability to connect groups that otherwise wouldn't and turn everyday people into civilian reporters. The North American news giant simply can't compete. For the people who were once considered the "king-pins" of news, it can indeed be scary to know that they're now contending with a platform they have no control over. Twitter is a new rival for news channels, and it's not going away anytime soon. In fact, during a recent public debate, tech visionaries Peter Thiel and Marc Andreessen both agreed that the social network is expected to have a lengthy lifespan. Thiel went further by declaring his belief that Twitter will outlast the New York Times.
CNN viewers are turning their attention to social networks because they not only want immediate access to information, but they want to participate in the action. While it's impossible for CNN to defeat social networks, it will be interesting to see their next move. We'll likely read about on Twitter.