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Social Media Australia: Trusting the Information


A slide from a community media presentation I give.

Have you ever been asked “…but how can we trust the content online? how do we know the identity of the person writing the review? how do we know the person is a recognised authority on the subject?

I’ve never fully understood this issue of societies ‘established authority’ figures, particularly when it comes to news on events. Maybe because I’ve always questioned traditional media. Made myself very unpopular after the first Gulf War asking people “you don’t really think we won that war, do you?”. I am reading Remote Control – new media new ethics at the moment.

Edited by Catharine Lumby and Elspeth Probyn contributors also include: Duncan Ivison, John Hartley, Maxine McKew, Ghassan Hage, Graeme Turner, Cherry Ripe, Anne Dunn, Jim Moser, Margo Kingston, Kate Crawford, Linda Jaivin, Kath Albury, Fiona Patten, Michael Moller, Milissa Dietz, John Safran

Yep Australian media, but a good counterpoint to The Cult of the Amateur: How Today’s Internet is Killing Our Culture by Andrew Keen.

I do remember when I first saw eBay, asking myself “but how do I know who’s a genuine reseller, and who’s just a hobbyist?” Like it mattered. Eventually, the mob voted and we could see who had made hundreds or thousands of sales and who had a good ranking in the community. I now judge eBay sellers by the amount of respect and trust the community puts in them, not what testimonials a company puts out there through their public relations department.

So I guess my response is: if other people have a blogger on their blogroll, quote that blogger, and respond to that bloggers topics, good chance you have a lead blogger in your market sector. But I do think half the fun is discovering ‘new’ voices. Otherwise the bloggerati become more of an authority support system for each other and less innovative. I watch the feeding frenzy to get a press release picked up by a known blogger in the States and it’s well, … scary.

What questions will Web 4.0 pose, I wonder?

Laurel Papworth

Named by Forbes™ Magazine in the Top 50 Social Media Influencers globally, named Head of Industry, Social Media (Marketing Magazine™) and in the Power150 Media bloggers (AdAge™). CERT IV Training and Assessment certified trainer (Diplomas and Certificates etc) Adult Education. Laurel has manager Facebook Pages for Junior Masterchef, Idol, Big Brother etc. and have consulted on private online communities for banks Westpac, not for profits UNHCR & governments in SE Asia. Lecturer, social media, University of Sydney for 10 years and Laurel has 11,000 online students. Laurel Papworth personally connects to 6 million followers online and has taught around 100,000 people in the last 10 years how to be social media managers.

2 thoughts on “Social Media Australia: Trusting the Information

  1. this so-called ‘established authority’ is a person or persons who have thought about, researched, considered and studied their subject. that’s why we listen to and read them.

  2. Agreed.
    Which is why I love bloggers – not journos regurgitating quotes from the expert du jour but deep research and study mixed with passion all for little or no monetary reward.
    blog > traditional FTW!

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