Is social media replacing traditional media? – A question that raises many discussions and heated debates dividing people into two groups. The concern – which group is the minority? Social or digital media has taken over interests of many people looking for their daily dose of morning news. Browsing on the phone in a crowded metro seems more feasible than reading a full newspaper. But is social media replacing traditional media altogether? If no, then to what extent?
The rise of social media begun when people started preferring interacting through digital devices rather than meeting in real life. Scrolling through Facebook or chatting on WhatsApp became the ideal choice while traveling. The rapid development of internet influenced the generation to believe that for everything, ‘Google’ is the answer.
The rise of Social Media
Every day there is a new social media channel introduced offering not just news but other entertainment that one used to watch on their television sets. It started when YouTube became the major video browsing platform where anyone could watch or upload a video. The platform started gaining major acknowledgement after a certain number of ‘YouTubers’ experienced recognition. Today, a YouTuber is almost as much as a celebrity as Television stars.
Then entered social media influencers. It was shocking to see how these individuals took over fame like a storm. The social media accounts of these people like Instagram has staggering amount of followers that keep increasing every day. People find interacting with their ‘favourites’ easy and fun through their social media accounts.
The introduction of platforms like Netflix and Amazon Prime became another reason of people moving on from traditional TV shows. The digitally savvy generation took no time in de-registering from their ‘set-top boxes’. A mere internet connection is now needed for everything from news to entertainment, thanks to these portals.
Facebook acquiring La Liga football
In recent news, major social media platform Facebook took over from Sony Pictures for the live streaming of Spanish football league La Liga’s matches in India.
This is an example of another major transition from the traditional TV channels to social media channels. The popular football league is one of the most watched global sports event for which Facebook is streaming now. The platform will live stream 380 football matches free of cost in India.
Sony Pictures Networks India (SPN) claimed the broadcasting rights of the Spanish football league between the years 2014-2018 for $32 million. Sony network dominates multiple major sports event broadcasting. The push towards digital media strengthened with this major step.
“As home to the two most-followed sports clubs on Facebook and some of the world’s most iconic footballers, La Liga has a huge global presence on our platform. Its popularity is notably visible in the Indian subcontinent, so we’re delighted to be able to serve the community of fans there with free, live La Liga matches for the next three seasons,” reports quoted Peter Hutton, head of global live sports programming at Facebook.
What the people have to say
Social media influencers and YouTubers find their respective platforms easy and comfortable to showcase their talent. People find the social media channels an intimate way to interact with their favourite and makes approaching them easy.
Deborah Garcia, YouTuber who goes with the name Tiffany Maxwell has over 57K followers on her YouTube channel. She started making compilation videos of celebrities and eventually experienced huge traffic on her channel.
“I believe my content shows that people like to know more than what meets the eye, they want to learn more and see more about people they love, or maybe just discovered in a movie they watched recently. That’s what social media is all about, and some of these people don’t use them, so that’s the only insight they have,” she says.
“For me, making these videos was for entertainment purpose only, to be honest. After knowing that the content makes people smile and laugh even just for a moment, made me move ahead with my work. I love when people tell me ‘I had such a bad day, and your video made me smile, so thank you’ and that’s my whole point,” she adds.
“And what’s nice about the ‘Social Media’ culture is that it brings people of same interests together. It creates bonds, sometimes even friendships. I for one have made some great friends in my journey, and that’s the true beauty of it all. People follow my channel for the celebrity videos, yes, but also for the quality of the content and that’s why I always try my best to get better and better. It allows me to work on my creative skills, it’s a way to express myself, and I thoroughly enjoy it.” Deborah concludes.
Karan Khurana, YouTuber at ‘K2KPRO’ says that, “There are no limitations on social media as anyone can show his/her talent by making videos. If your scripting is good, then public will connect with you for more. People can connect directly to the person they like to watch.”
“I believe that people are moving on from the traditional TV shows also because of less censorship and the option of providing open criticism. TV shows or even news programs do not allow us to voice our opinions easily, while social media presents you with the comments section. Interaction becomes easy. Artists like me get to present the world with my talent and gives me the opportunity to meet new people sharing my interests,” he adds.
“In simple words, social media is an easy road to fame where success eventually follows, strange but true.” Karan concludes.
Social Media or Traditional Media?
Yes, it is true that social media has become a preferred way of communication and source of information. But that doesn’t mean that the newspaper industry is going out of business anytime soon.
Traditional media’s existence is the most crucial aspect of anyone’s life. There is a large number of population that reads a newspaper every day like a morning ritual. That kind of media has been around for hundreds of years while social media is still new to some people. Media is the fourth pillar of democracy. Many people rely on the news channels and newspaper reports to learn about their country and the world.
Social media and traditional media co-exist in the same world with one complimenting the other. The rise of one, doesn’t replace the other altogether.