By Christiana Van Bree
Anyone with internet access has the world’s most pressing news at their fingertips. A person who wants to read the latest headlines can simply click the ‘news’ button on a search engine. Facebook, however, does much more because it spreads news to those who aren’t looking for it. From college students to stay-at-home moms, everyone with a Facebook account gains news about virtually anything from their Newsfeed.
According to a Princeton Survey Research Associates Int’l study, of 3,000 US adults, 70% said they get most of their news from friends’ and family’s news posts on Facebook. Only 13% said they get news from posts by news organizations and journalists.
A person can claim to not follow sports, but when Superbowl Sunday rolls around, that person’s Newsfeed is probably blowing up with scores, play by plays and opinions on the game. If a person connects their mobile device to Facebook, they will never be too far from instant updates.
Sports teams have increasingly used Facebook to reach fans by creating Facebook pages. When a Facebook user likes a team’s page, any news or updates from the team will appear on the user’s Newsfeed. Team’s pages can also connect fans from all over the world.
“Our Facebook page for KickTV has an incredible international audience,” MLS Director of Social Media, Amanda Vandervort said at the AllFacebook Marketing Conference last week.
On the contrary to the praise Facebook gets for instant updates, many do not rely on Facebook for news. As easily as it spreads news, it can also spread rumors and false information very fast.
“I remember my Newsfeed blowing up near the end of [Superbowl XLII] with posts about the Patriots’ victory. It was funny to see my newsfeed two minutes later, when the Giants scored a winning touchdown with 2:42 left on the clock,” American college student, Alex Krotulski said.
Accuracy of news on Facebook should always be questioned; however, a person can simply click on the sports team’s Facebook page or search it on Google to confirm anything. The Newsfeed is simply responsible for the most important part of spreading news: catching the audience’s initial attention.