Survey finds journalists reading blogs more, trusting corporate spokespeople less

NEW YORK: A recent survey shows journalists are increasingly turning to blogs in their research for articles, but view corporate spokespeople as a less-than-credible source of information.

NEW YORK: A recent survey shows journalists are increasingly turning to blogs in their research for articles, but view corporate spokespeople as a less-than-credible source of information.

Conducted by Euro RSCG Magnet and Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, the survey polled more than 1200 journalists around the world.

Although the survey showed that 53% of the respondents use blogs to find story ideas and 42% use it for research, only 1% believe blogs are credible sources.

?[Journalists] understand the blogging business is full of lone wolves who trade in speculation,? said Steve Ross, professor of journalism at Columbia University?s Grauduate School of Journalism event disclosing the findings. Several trade, business, and consumer journalists were also part of the panel discussion at the event.

Matthew Flamm, media reporter for Crain?s New York Business, said he does use credible blogs in his research.

?I go to them because they are experts,? he said.

Although journalists use corporate spokespeople as sources 74% of the time, only 9% of respondents viewed them as very credible.

Amey Stone, a senior writer at BusinessWeek Online, said being open and available to journalists could help improve that credibility. When spokespeople take a question and get back to the journalist, she said, it is a sign that he or she will return with a carefully researched answer.

But Paul Holmes, political and general news editor at Reuters, said when dealing with corporate spokespeople, there could be ?an element of over control.?

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