Seminar reading summary 2

Thornburg (2011), pp. 135-166

This is a review of a section in Thornburg’s 2011 book, which covers how to properly conduct research on the internet, as well as using social media to make contacts and collect information for stories.

Conducting research for an article on the internet is both a good move and at the same time a bad move. It’s a good move because the internet has information on virtually every subject on the planet and can be accessed in mere seconds. The reason why it’s a bad move is because anyone can upload information to the internet and because of that there is bound to be a large amount of ‘information’ which is either false or riddled with inaccuracies.

When using search engines such as Google or Yahoo!, it is recommended that you word the question in such a way that it might provide you with the best results possible. Be literal and avoid questions, search engines do no think as humans do and process everything in the most literal way possible. For example, if you wished to find out which films were coming out next year, you would enter something along the lines of ‘films 2015’ or ‘list of films in 2015’ instead of something like ‘what films are coming out in 2015?’.

“Many journalists will tell you that the best part about their profession is that they’re always learning something new. The best journalists exhibit a heightened curiosity about unfamiliar subjects. These days, the first place we turn when we want to learn about a newcollec is the internet”. (Thornburg 2011, page 140).

Social media sites are a decent and mostly reliable source of information for online research. Without leaving your desk, you can communicate with millions of other people around the world instantaneously.


Thornburg, 2011, page 140


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