recalled. “I had to push control F to get the
Athar, inadvertently tweeted everything that
cursor to move up the page.”
he was experiencing; consequently, social me-
“I even remember registering for classes by
dia’s role was transformed in the process.
phone,” she reminisced. “Way back in the
Back in May of 2011, two days after Osama
Bin Laden’s death, Burns joined Fox 13’s
The tall, enthusiastic PR professor with bouncy shoulder-length blond hair did anything just then but age herself when one considers
“Good Day Tampa Bay” to talk about the phenomenal transformation of social media in news coverage.
that Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare are all
“It is a very small world and news is travel-
still relatively new and in good, well, let’s be
ing faster than ever before,” Burns said on the
honest - spectacular condition. I will also point
morning program. “The death of Bin Laden hit
out that there is no return-to-sender in sight.
America’s news channels on Sunday evening.
With restaurants, as well as clothing and apparel stores, all having their own Facebook accounts, it is no big surprise that social media has gained a presence when it comes to
Let us say that someone was asleep at the time and woke up and watched the news and said, ‘Oh my gosh, I have to tweet this,’ everyone would say, ‘We already know.’”
coverage of world news. News organizations
Facebook launched in 2005, four years af-
now have their own Facebook and Twitter
ter 9/11. Who knows how different that time
sites. Even more so, the common bystander is
would have been if America was as connected
the one breaking a story.
then as we are now.
That is what happened with the death of
“My first semester teaching was 2001, the
Osama Bin Laden. A man in Pakistan, Sohaib
year the twin towers were hit,” said Burns.
FALL 2012 THE BULLHORN 15