Journalism is a profession dedicated to delivering important information to audiences. Over the years, as technology has evolved this process has developed into journalists supplying information to users not audiences, as the reader takes a much more active role in the 21st century.
In order for this much more active exchange to take place, journalists must adapt to using more modern and technical tools such as; Instagram and WhatsApp.
Instagram and WhatsApp are two different mobile applications, one designed for photo-sharing and social networking and the other is an instant-messaging service. Both apps are extremely popular with billions of people using them worldwide. Therefore they are prime tools to be utilised to aid journalists in broadcasting news stories.
Instagram was created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger in 2010, and was designed to let people share pictures with the world. However, as the app has evolved and numbers skyrocketing to 500 million monthly users  – a different purpose for the site has arisen, purpose which aids news organisations in distributing stories. The convenience of being able to share a 45 second video clip, as well as a concise description of whats happening, with every user on Instagram in a matter of minutes is unbelievably useful to journalists and news organisations. ITV News alone have 111k followers, meaning when ITV post a news story, 111,000 people are instantly alerted to it – making the whole process of news reporting easier! No wonder all major news organisations have Instagram accounts now.
Despite being created the same year as Instagram, WhatsApp is still the more popular app with over 1 billion people using it everyday. As they put it: “That’s nearly one in seven people on Earth who use WhatsApp each month to stay in touch with their loved ones, their friends, and their family.” It’s ability to directly communicate with individuals instantly is helpful to journalists and aids them in making connections with potential sources, and people on a personal level.
In 2016, the majority of people access the news through various social media platforms, like WhatsApp and Instagram – due to it’s more accessible and convenient nature. This means that modern applications like these are very powerful tools, which grant journalist immediate access to a global audience, and facilitate in news gathering, and the communication of mass media.
As a journalist student hoping to enter into the profession, WhatsApp and Instagram will be useful tools to employ in my assignments. Not only allowing me to communicate my work in a direct, instant and visual way, but also providing excellent practice for when I may need to use them in my career in later life. Despite the character restriction on Twitter, I personally would still consider the site to be slightly more useful than WhatsApp and Instagram simply due to the fast speed of it. With timelines being updated constantly, and various news stories being commented on every second by people all over the world, it is a more beneficial site for journalists and news organisations.
-  By the numbers: 180+ Interesting Instagram Statistics (October) By Craig Smith expandedramblings.com/index.php/important-instagram-stats/
-  One million people now use WhatsApp by Cade Metz
WhatsApp alone is used by more than a billion people – thats 1 in 7 people.