After the Boston Marathon bombing, many people took to social networks to engage in amateur sleuthing and to hypothesize about the perpetrators' identities. Unfortunately, many of their guesses were wrong and were amplified by the mainstream media. That has led to soul-searching both about the relationship between social media and reporting, and about how social media users should respond to national crises. "This is one of the most alarming social media events of our time. We're really good at uploading images and unleashing amateurs, but we're not good with the social norms that would protect the innocent," media studies professor Siva Vaidhyanathan says.

Related Summaries