Online journalism enables the public to receive information within minutes of an event occurring, she said.Pressures to keep this news current in order to “keep up with the conversation” means that accuracy can often be jeopardised.
Online editor Tom Regan said for the Internet to be an effective news medium, the “intoxicating elixir of breathless immediacy” needs to be forgotten. He added that the faster distribution of news is advantageous, though it cannot be at the cost of accuracy.
Social media expert Clay Shirky said that accuracy issues on media platforms such as Twitter are “inevitable” He argued that incorrect facts are usually corrected by other users.
Marc Fisher, a Senior Editor at The Washington Post, spoke with ABC journalist Richard Aedy about the Internet as “a self correcting mechanism.” He said that relying on readers to correct facts diminishes the trust and credibility of the news source.
Fisher used video based news organisation, Now This News, as an example of the implications of “post now, correct later.” He said that although their videos are appropriations of other news sources, they are not exempt from journalistic conventions of fact verification. Now This News, according to Fisher, publicly relinquished any responsibility for the accuracy of their videos.
He said that profitable news organisations such as Buzzfeed, have recognised that credibility and accuracy are important, particularly when “advertisers will pay a premium when accuracy is guaranteed.”
Fisher added that Buzzfeed recently began to hire copy editors to strike a balance between accuracy and speed.