According to US News, Trust in the news has fallen by 2% in the last year and TikTok is the fastest-growing social network in the report, used by 20% of 18- to 24-year-olds for News Updates, an increase of 5% from last year.
NIMCJ stated that traditional media only supports one-way communication. On the contrary, social media lets people communicate on a two-way street. It means unlike traditional media, social media users can leave reactions, comments, and so on. But is this the only reason why people are turning to social media or is there a bigger mystery behind it?
Shweta Mishra said she didn’t trust apps like TikTok. Mishra, a 40-year-old real estate agent from Mumbai, India, said “TikTok is full of opinions instead of facts, we never had all this back when I was young, I don’t trust it,” when asked whether she trusted media like TikTok over traditional media for news.
Mishra believes that something as important as News should come from professionals, not just anyone. “Fact-checking is important in today’s world,” she said, “When people spread fake news, it is bad for the environment” she laughed.
“If I’m being honest, apps like TikTok have more than just News, it’s an entertainment forum, not a News one. Yes, it can be informative but I prefer newspapers, news websites, and traditional News like that.” Mishra said. Mishra feels that a lot of people nowadays believe inaccurate news. “I find it surprising that fewer people are trusting traditional media these days, but that explains why so many people believe false news and opinions to be facts,” Mishra said.
Mishra believes TikTok and related social media applications are merely useful for keeping up with pop culture and does not prefer them over traditional media sources when it comes to News. She said, “Social media is great for entertainment and keeping up with celebrity lives but the News is a serious matter, I don’t think I am one of those people that would trust traditional media less and pick TikTok over it.”
“The saying, “Old is Gold” exists for a reason,” Mishra said, “nothing new and cool can just replace something classic that has been going on for decades.”
Perhaps your age influences your choice of a News source. Younger individuals are more engaged on social media, whereas older individuals avoid it because they don't trust it and find it difficult to use. But, aside from age, mentality may have a larger influence on a topic like this one. Some people prefer to conserve what is old and conventional, while others want to try new and exciting things.
Aditya Singh Kapoor, a 21-year-old college senior studying mechanical engineering at AMITY University Mumbai, said he prefers TikTok over any traditional media. “It is just easier for me to remember news while also having fun. Whereas, traditional news media channels their facts through statements and headlines which to be honest, is boring” he said.
“Opening a news channel and watching it takes a longer time and I tend to forget everything, but scrolling through TikTok and having people do dances or skits that help me remember the news is fun and happens a lot faster,” Kapoor said, calling traditional media time-consuming and easily forgettable.
Kapoor considers social media as a better platform. “Certain newspapers or traditional media sources are biased and there is no way to determine whether they are biased or not. But according to me, TikTok and social media are platforms with a lot of opinions in general so they are not heavily politically biased, which makes it a much better medium. Plus, TikTok is digital and newspapers waste so much paper,” he said.
“Honestly, the news you showed me was shocking at first because it is such a big change and traditional media has been around for longer. Maybe people even judge the ones that get their news from TikTok, and say stuff like, “Oh, if you found it on TikTok the news is probably fake”, but I trust the people I follow on TikTok, and the fact that everyone is just spreading misleading information is a big myth.” Kapoor said, not so surprised with the news of people turning to TikTok for News.
Kapoor believes that since times are changing, it’s natural for people to change as well. “The way TikTok is structured makes it accessible and easy to use.” he said, “Everyone has a phone these days and, on that phone, they have TikTok, but not everyone reads the newspaper.” Kapoor believes that digitalization has made access to TikTok easier than the newspaper.
“Traditional media is more or so around nostalgia, just because something has been around for longer doesn’t mean it’s right,” Kapoor said.
As reported by The Conversation, fake news has always existed, but quality journalism has a history of survival, the battle is not just between traditional and social media; perhaps the unifying adversary is untrue information and these are just the various methods individuals use to avoid it.
Even though some TikTok accounts aren’t as trustable, some do prove to be efficient and do not spread fake news. As reported by https://whatsnewinpublishing.com/ here are some trustable sources on TikTok; 1) The Washington Post, 2) The Daily Mail (UK), 3) Radio Svaboda\ Radio Liberty (Belarus), 4) BBC (UK), 5) La Nación (Argentina), 6) The Telegraph (UK), 7) Some Good News (USA).
However, not everyone understands this, and the battle between traditional media and social media platforms such as TikTok continues, with more people turning to TikTok these days.
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