#Ferguson Strategic Messaging: How Local Journalists and Activists Used Twitter

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#Ferguson strategic messaging: How local journalists and activists used Twitter as a communication tool

By Amber Hinsley and Hyunmin Lee

Guided by literature on journalistic practices and activists’ communication strategies during crises, this pilot study examined how local journalists and activists used Twitter as a communication tool following Michael Brown’s death. Through a content analysis, we noted general Twitter practices used by journalists and activists, examined whether the two groups used different message strategies, and identified the ways in which journalists and activists framed their messages about the Ferguson crisis. Findings suggested that while the local journalists and activists showed similarities in their overall use of Twitter, their message strategies and frames were consistent with established practices for each group.

The role of social media has garnered much attention in examining the spread of news and information related to the August 2014 death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. We sought…

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