Accepted paper:

An Empirical Research of News Dissemination through Twitter in Japan


Tomoko Takemura (Ritsumeikan University)

Paper short abstract:

The purpose of this study was to investigate what kinds of news events are spread by Twitter users and what information about the news is included in their tweets. The study found that popular news on Twitter has the same news values as traditional media, but has some different features from them.

Paper long abstract:

With the emergence in the Internet technology of the late 1990s, our media environment drastically changed, and the growth in the use of smartphones in the recent year accelerated this transformation. This change of the media has also affected our media use. Social media is one of the most influential media which changed how people interacts with information. Today social media work as devices for people to send information freely and receive information easily. This study focuses on use of Twitter by Japanese. In Japan, these days the number of Twitter users is growing most rapidly, and it gains popularity especially with the younger generation. They access various information through Twitter. As the number of people who watch TV news and read newspapers has decreased, it is getting common to find out about the latest news through Twitter. Today Twitter works one of the most significant news media. The purpose of this study was to investigate how news are covered on newspapers and twitters by comparing between news coverage on newspapers and tweets. This presentation deals with coverage on Moritomo Gakuen issue, which is a recent major news topic in Japan as one of the case study. As the result, it was found that news values which media researchers on traditional media had insisted for a long time are related with dissemination of news on Twitter. However, the news which Twitter users like to spread has some characteristics different from the traditional values. In Japan, the trend of Twitter is going to continue for a while. Twitter has a strong potential to become a powerful tool to send news to many people, so media researchers have to keep studying hard to examine Twitter as news media.

panel S5b_17
Social media in Japan