Pakastani IT consultant Sohaib Athar unknowingly live tweeted about the US raid on Osama Bin Laden. In the hours that followed, Sohaib (pronounced Suhayb) fielded several media requests and was inundated with messages from social media users across the globe.
The consultant, however, wasn’t looking for fame or fortune (he actually owns a small coffee shop and tweeted that people shouldn’t flood the business because he couldn’t handle the rush). As his popularity began to grow, he tweeted that he was picking up followers “too fast to count or care”.
Hundreds of news outlets have written/updated stories to include Sohaib’s tweets during the attack as a first-person account.
This isn’t the first time tweets have been used as sources for news stories. Usually, though, social posts are used to quote celebrities and politicians – especially when pointing out questionable commentary or actions.
In Sohaib’s case, his tweets are the sole foundation for many articles posted.
This begs the questions:
Is live tweeting an acceptable substitute for one-on-one interviews?
And, in this particular case, how much money will Sohaib’s tweets generate for news outlets?
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