social media and online journalism’s role in the lifting of the Debt Ceiling

Yesterday was the first official day government employees could work after a 16 day “vacation”. Though I’m not a government employee, my father is. My mother has an independent business that has been making little to no money for the last few years, so my father is the only source of income. Since it personally affects me, I had been keeping close to my phone and computer for updates.

Wednesday night after I got off work, went to a yoga class and went grocery shopping. While I was on the go, I could still be plugged into what was going on in the Senate.

It has been a huge stress for the whole family, so yesterday and today have been rather relieving. So relieving that it made me step back and think about my behavior on Wednesday night. The constant checking of Twitter, the live streams, the news notifications on my phone- I didn’t have the inclination to pick up the morning newspaper to read the debt-ceiling story, because, well, I had listened to it while it was being decided, and I had read about it too. I even talked to my father on the phone shortly after I read tweets.

This reinforced to me that print media is surely on its way out. Our country has been withstanding deep stress the last couple weeks, and I wasn’t going to wait until the morning to hear about the relieving updates. I wanted them immediately. I’m pretty sure I wasn’t the only one thinking this way, and I’m pretty sure the majority of people considered the front page story about the Senate decision on Thursday morning as “old news”.

Social media and online media has continued to inform the public in a quicker and more efficient way. Not only were there multiple live streams from different news outlets, but also live Twitter updates from reliable sources.

Photo taken from blogworld. When signed with "BO" the tweet is coming directly from Barack Obama.

Photo taken from blogworld.

Even more interesting, there has been discussion that social media actually aided in the deal made. President Obama actually began a Twitter tag named “Compromise”. This tag was  to be used to get congressmen’s attention from the public. Obama actually lost over 36,000 followers because of the campaign, but multiple states were very much in support and tweeted using the hashtag.

Twitter and other forms of online media have proven to take the cake in informing the public of timely news. In this case, it might have even helped the large issue seek #compromise. At least, for now.