I delivered a lecture at the Sri Lanka College of Journalism today on the use of social media in election reporting. The presentation I based my interactive lecture on is below. Aspect of the up-coming Presidential Elections are unprecedented in any number of ways. A point about it is that both leading candidates use social media to a degree that no other election in Sri Lanka has witnessed in the past. My submission was that literacy in social and new media is thus a perquisite in covering these elections, both to critically appreciate content produced by and placed online by candidates, as well as to gather information on election violence and other outrageous malpractices.
I also used the lecture to suggest that the participants, leading mid-career journalists from print as well as electronic media in Sri Lanka, could use these tools to create media of their own, responding to issues they thought were under-reported, or were hostage to the bias of an editor, publisher or owner.