Not only is Twitter used as a reporting or news gathering tool for journalists, it can have a role in creating news as well.
Due to the public nature of Twitter, journalist's tweets and interactions with other users are open for everyone to see. Sometimes controversial tweets or debates can flare up and therefore become the story themselves.
When I signed onto Twitter this morning, I saw that Sara Ganim had posted a link to a Philly.com story about a subject whom she did not trust. Within 15 minutes, she retweeted the subject in the article criticizing her and calling her names.
Before Twitter, it would have been unlikely the subject, Greg Bucceroni, would have gone through the process to contact her. And if he did, the public would not have known about it. But now, with a click of a button, any of the 26,000 plus followers Ganim has saw the tweet, making it a story in itself.
ESPN's sports business analyst Darren Rovell has no problem engaging in debates with his twitter followers. Often times, Rovell would engage in hour long back-and-forth on Twitter with other journalists he disagrees with.
Back in January, Rovell sent out a tweet lamenting how there was a "complete lack of interest" in tennis in the United States. Sports Illustrated Richard Deitsch took issue with the tweet and replied to Rovell, who did not shy from the confrontation.
The website, Awful Announcing, has a nice recap of the debate and notes Rovell is no stranger to the Twitter feud scene.
We've been told as journalists we should not inject ourselves into the story, but what about creating the story? With Twitter, anyone has immediate contact to you and there are times I believe the retweets or tweets warrant the public knowing.
I don't think Sara Ganim woke up thinking she would be called a "lying b****" but she was, and not only did her tweets create a story, she now is the story.