Journalists to report with only Twitter and Facebook

22 Jan 2010

Five journalists, one farmhouse, Twitter and Facebook.

Sounds like season of the reality-TV show Big Brother, but it’s actually a challenge being undertaken by a group of journalists: Five of them have agreed to stay in a farmhouse together for five days, beginning 1 February, and use only Twitter and Facebook as a means of sources for stories. No mobile phones, no contact with people in the outside world, other than through the social-networking sites.

The point is to see how good Twitter and Facebook are at providing information. The streams have proven to be watchworthy in terms of breaking news, for example, new of the death of pop star Michael Jackson in June 2009 reportedly broke on Twitter before it broke on CNN.

The journalists, from Canadian, French, Belgian and Swiss radio stations, will be shacking up in the Perigord region in the south of France. They will be issuing updates to their respective radio stations and are to update a collective blog.

Photo: Five journalists will see if Facebook is a good source for stories, along with Twitter, when they live together in a French farmhouse with access only to the social-networking sites

By Tina Costanza