Facebook has made it so that virtually all middle-to-upper-class world citizens under the age of sixty have a Facebook, or a friend with a Facebook that would take the time to e-mail all contacts if Godzilla was tearing apart their city.
These people know that they will not have to switch on their TV to find out that Mr. ‘Zilla is using the bridge they were going to use to commute to work as a backscratcher. Many people even have a mechanism that beeps or rings when they get an e-mail (and since happenings in social media are sent through e-mail alerts, as soon as one person knows, the city knows in a matter of minutes… or the parts of the city with clean water and grocery stores at least)
Therefore websites and news channels catered towards people that already use social media assume some level of prior knowledge of the subject matter and usually analyze all implications in a more in-depth manner than the television and radio news more commonly listened to by the internetless class.
Facebook is usually a launching point, where somebody will post a link, and then it is the responsibility of whoever clicks on that link to verify the information. What makes it better than an anonymous site or a newspaper is that there is more accountability, and people may comment after, which means that a journalist will be careful with what news they stand behind as factual.
Many of the first people to join Facebook were journalists of some sort, or at least used Facebook for journalistic purposes. If people had radicalized and organized through Facebook, we may have taken over the world in a bloodless revolution. Problem is, the place sank to the lowest common denominator and is now a cesspool of garbage and self-promoting garbage.
Here’s a simple equation that explains why Facebook did not reach its potential for journalism.
Journalism+Money Interests= Compromised Journalism
(You can actually replace journalism with any human phenomenon except for cake)