100 articles – ‘Reuters Social Media Guidelines’

25 May 2010

Written by: Lawrie Zion

‘Reuters Social Media Guidelines’ from the Reuters Handbook of Journalism

As the media changes, there should also be changing guidelines for journalists. In its Social Media Guidelines, Reuters explains how its journalists should deal with social media nowadays.

They argue that as a journalist for Reuters, you represent that company at all times, even when you are home, chatting to your friends on Facebook or Twitter. So a journalist should always think before they post and make clear that this is their view and not the view of the company. But Reuters warns us that even then they will keep an eye on you to see whether your posts, in their vision, are acceptable.

Is it freaky to know that there is always some sort of Big Brother watching you when you work for big media companies? I don’t think so. It actually gives you a reference point as to what is acceptable in using social media. Sometimes it is just too easy to spill everything that you have on your mind online, before giving it a second thought. These guidelines make you think before you post, which, in my opinion should only be applauded.

Maike Winters is a Master of Global Communications student at La Trobe University.

More on the ‘100 articles’ project, including the list so far, can be found here.