Global Power Book: PR chiefs seek Twitter for breaking news, but traditional media 'more influential'

Twitter is now far and away the channel of choice for senior PR figures to find breaking stories, according to PRWeek's Global Power Book. However, more traditional online news outlets are viewed as far more influential.

Twitter: Top medium for breaking news
Twitter: Top medium for breaking news

The questionnaire in the Global Power Book asked senior global industry figures which medium they turn to for breaking news. As concrete proof of the changing way people consume news, 85 chose Twitter, way ahead of the BBC (16), CNN (11) and Sky News (five).

No other social media platform came close to Twitter. Just two entrants chose its major rival, Facebook, and there was one vote for Chinese site Sina Weibo.

But despite its position as the most favoured breaking news portal, there were doubts over the extent of Twitter’s true influence.

Asked which platform was the 'most influential in your world', 15 chose Twitter, behind established news staples such as the New York Times (30), the BBC (28), The Wall Street Journal (25) and the Financial Times (22).

It seems that while Twitter is good for a quick hit of news, senior PR figures still equate influence with quality journalism.

Interestingly, long-established UK newspapers received little support on this question, despite the heavy British contingent in the Global Power Book. The Daily Mail had two votes, The Times and The Daily Telegraph one each, and the red tops The Sun and The Mirror had none at all.

Also notable is the sheer number of different answers given here, with around 50 publications and platforms listed as their most influential. Perhaps understandably, many related to specific industries and/or territories. But Frank Shaw, Microsoft corporate VP, corporate comms, offered this explanation: "There is no longer a single most influential news outlet."

Q: To which medium do you turn for breaking news?

1. Twitter (85)

2. BBC (16)

3. CNN (11)

4. Sky News (5) =

5. Bloomberg (5)=

Q: Which media outlet is the most influential in your world?

1. New York Times (30)

2. BBC (28)

3. Wall Street Journal (25)

4. Financial Times (22)

5. Twitter (15)

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