Covering the conflict in Ukraine - what can social media add?

This source preferred by Stephen Jukes

Authors: Jukes, S.

Start date: 25 February 2015

Truth, it is said, is the first casualty of war. From the beginning of time conflict and propaganda have gone hand in hand and the role of the media in shaping the perception of war has always been under the spotlight. But while until a few years ago, the media had a virtual monopoly on the representation of conflict, the advent of social media with “user generated” images and mobile phone footage has broken that stranglehold with far reaching consequences. The Arab Spring has shown that dictators can no longer manage the message and the consumer of news is now witnessing new ways of representing, and even waging, war. This paper explores what role established media and alternative new forms of media are playing in the Ukraine war. Can social media add to our understanding of the conflict in Ukraine and what are established news organisations doing to verify the flood of such data freely available online? The paper concludes by posing the question whether consumers of news are today better or worse informed than during conflicts of the pre-Internet era.

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