Authors: Sabir Haque, Dr. Padma Rani
Abstract: Social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter have emerged beyond sites not only for social contacts but also as a source of information on politics and public affairs. The world of socialized media is maturing, and its users are discovering new ways to find news or see news partly by accident. Global trends show that online news websites and social media are valued more for serendipity (alerting audiences to stories they didn’t know about). In this study, we investigate the emerging trend of news access in the UAE. Specifically, we propose that serendipity in news access on social media and online news sites is significant from active pursuit of news on traditional mainstream media. The research frame is validated with survey data collected from 385 UAE residents. The results provide general empirical support for our hypotheses. The study highlights the discussion about Facebook’s algorithm and news selection as primary concerns for news organization globally.
Keywords: social media; media access; new media; UAE media; media source