Traditional news outlets turn to social networking Web sites in an effort to build their online audiences.

Can Facebook and Twitter save the beleaguered mainstream media?

That is the question posed, and answered, in an American Journalism Review article by Arielle Emmett.

Maybe not by themselves. But news organizations increasingly are turning to social networking tools in their efforts to compete in a challenging and fast-changing media landscape.

Vivian Schiller, outgoing senior vice president and general manager of NYTimes.com, says social media marketing is one of several essential strategies for disseminating news online – and for surviving.

“Though the long-term viability of any individual social networking site or technology is completely unproven,” Schiller says, “readers will engage with each other and share stories. That is a given.”

Can Facebook and Twitter save the beleaguered mainstream media?

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