Twitter users weighed in quickly and voluminously to Apple’s
introduction of its new iOS
5 operating system. Reaction to the June 6 rollout accounted for nearly
one-third (31%) of the news links from June 6-10, according to the New Media Index from the Pew
Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism.
The day after the June 6 announcement, social media
users were already downloading the upgrade, which had already been released for
developers—and which includes more than 200 new features for the iPhone and
iPad—by following steps to get a beta version of the upgrade before it was made
using a backdoor. And they were providing followers with detailed reviews
and commentary along the way.
Their verdict was largely positive.
“Day 2 with iOS 5 Beta:
Impressed. New Music app rocks. iMessages are pretty flawless (albeit
"jumpy"), Apple nailed Notification Center,” tweeted Arron Hirst,
in what was a typical response to the new product.
In the often technology-heavy Twitter conversation, no
subject generates more consistent interest than the doings at digital media
giant Apple. Couple that with a central function of acting as a kind of social
media consumer reports for new tech products and gadgets, and this release was
ready made for the Twitter entourage.
Coming in 4th, was the fallout from Congressman
Anthony Weiner’s June 6 admission of sending inappropriate photos and
messages to a number of women. But at just 4% the story generated much less
attention here than in the mainstream press last
Whenever Apple releases a
new product, or even when there are simply rumorsabouta
product, Twitter users get excited. And last week, the new iOS 5 operating
system generated a lot of specific evaluations.
“Love the new notification center. iOS 5 Just slide down
from the time bar at the top,” wrote Grant
“Surprise! Apple Has Also Built Social Contact Integration
With Facebook, Flickr, LinkedIn and Myspace Into iOS 5,” said Liz
Many Mac and tech blogs wrote about the
issue, also focusing on individual features of the update.
But others questioned why anyone would complain about the
“why are people mad that iOS 5 is
not compatible with 3G? that's like being mad that Windows 7 doesn't run on
your pentium 1,” quipped Marc
In the Blogosphere: Health
Care, Guns and Japanese Tourists
The discussions in the blogosphere last week focused
on several hot button issues—including health care, guns, the drug war and the
The No. 1 subject, with 15% of news links was a story about how
judges in Atlanta posed skeptical questions during oral argument,
suggesting they might be ready to declare all or part of the health care law
unconstitutional. The large majority
of bloggers who weighed in were pleased that the bill signed by President Obama
was under legal challenge.
The second-biggest subject (13%) was a BBC story about Japanese tourists getting
“Paris syndrome”—becoming stressed when visiting the city because of rude
Parisians or high expectations. It attracted attention last week when The
Guardian revisited the topic and linked to the original BBC piece after
noticing it was getting buzz on Twitter.
The third-biggest story, with 9% of links, was an article
about the police chief in Los Angeles urging the passage of a law requiring BB
guns to be brightly colored to avoid confusion with firearms. That
generated comments from gun-rights advocates who argued that criminals would
paint regular firearms in bright colors.
Conservative bloggers last week cheered the circuit court’s apparent
skepticism about the constitutionality of the health care bill that was signed
last year after a long and bitter political battle.
“Is it possible? Could a branch of our government still have
the common sense to save us from this humongous over-stepping of governmental
authority?” asked Have
Some Sense, “Hopefully the Judicial will come to the rescue. In this
case, law-making is like baseball; 1 for 3 is not too bad.”
“Granted, granted, a tough oral argument is no guarantee of
defeat, but the mere possibility of O-Care crashing and burning in the 11th
Circuit is tasty enough to be blogworthy,” wrote Republican
“I certainly hope they rule in favor of the Constitution,
but the SCOTUS hasn’t always been so favorable to liberty. While I look
forward to the day when the SCOTUS rules the entire law unconstitutional, I
much prefer Congress completely repealing it,” wrote Chris
Bounds at Liberty Juice.
A number of bloggers jumped on the LAPD BB gun story,
arguing that criminals would paint their guns in bright colors so that police
would think they were BB guns.
“If i were a violent criminal in LA, then I would paint my
real gun to look like a colored toy or BB gun and that will cause the officer
to delay that critical shot,” wrote M.J.
Mollenhour at LuckyGunner.com.
“Okay, so what happens when criminals start painting their
real guns in bright neon colors?” wrote dcr
On YouTube, Sarah Palin and her much-publicized “One Nation”
bus tour drew the most attention last week.
The No. 1 and No. 5 videos focused on Palin’s June 2 stop at
the Old North Church in Boston where she offered her own version of Paul
Revere’s famous Midnight Ride.
Palin said that Revere, “warned the British that they
weren’t going to be taking away our arms by ringing those bells and making sure
as he’s riding his horse through town to send those warning shots and bells that
we were going to be sure and we were going to be free, and we were going to be
That statement, as was quickly pointed out in many quarters
of the media, does not exactly fit with the historical record.
Most Viewed News & Politics Videos on YouTube For the Week of June 4-10, 2011
1. A clip from a local news program of Sarah Palin
offering her own version of Paul Revere’s famous Midnight Ride
2. Barcelona soccer star Lionel Messi assaulted by
a Rosario Central fan on the streets of his native city of Rosario, Argentina
3.The June 1 edition of the Philip
DeFranco Show where the host talks about a number of topics including FEMA,
the death of a 13 year-old boy in Syria, and Blake Lively
4. The June 2 edition of the Philip DeFranco Show where
DeFranco talks about topics such as the global war on drugs and
5. Another local news story clip of Sarah Palin’s explanation
of Paul Revere’s Midnight Ride
The New Media Index is a weekly report that captures the leading
commentary of blogs and social media sites focused on news and compares
those subjects to that of the mainstream press.
PEJ's New Media Index is a companion to its weekly News Coverage
Index. Blogs and other new media are an important part of creating
today's news information narrative and in shaping the way Americans
interact with the news. The expansion of online blogs and other social
media sites has allowed news-consumers and others outside the mainstream
press to have more of a role in agenda setting, dissemination and
interpretation. PEJ aims to find out what subjects in the national news
the online sites focus on, and how that compared with the narrative in
the traditional press.
A prominent Web tracking site Icerocket,
which monitors millions of blogs, uses the links to articles embedded
on these sites as a proxy for determining what these subjects are. Using
this tracking process as a base, PEJ staff compiles the lists of links
weekday each day. They capture the top five linked-to stories on each
list (25 stories each week), and reads, watches or listens to these
posts and conducts a content analysis of their subject matter, just as
it does for the mainstream press in its weekly News Coverage Index. It follows the same coding methodology as that of the NCI. Note: When the NMI was launched in January 2009, another web-tracking site Technorati
was similarly monitoring blogs and social media. PEJ originally
captured both Technorati's and Icerocket's daily aggregation. In recent
months, though, this component of Technorati's site has been down with
no indication of when it might resume.
The priorities of the bloggers are measured in terms of percentage
of links. Each time a news blog or social media Web page adds a link to
its site directing its readers to a news story, it suggests that the
author of the blog places at least some importance on the content of
that article. The user may or may not agree with the contents of the
article, but they feel it is important enough to draw the reader's
attention to it. PEJ measures the topics that are of most interest to
bloggers by compiling the quantitative information on links and
analyzing the results.
For the examination of the links from Twitter, PEJ staff monitors the tracking site Tweetmeme.
Similar to Icerocket, Tweetmeme measures the number of times a link to a
particular story or blog post is tweeted and retweeted. Then, as we do
with Icerocket, PEJ captures the five most popular linked-to pages each
weekday under the heading of "news" as determined by Tweetmeme's method
of categorization. And as with the other data provided in the NMI, the
top stories are determined in terms of percentage of links. (One minor
difference is that Tweetmeme offers the top links over the prior 24
hours while the list used on Icerocket offers the top links over the
previous 48 hours.)