When it comes to getting the word out, apparently nothing beats Twitter. A recent GigaOm article sought to explain how a 24/7 news cycle combined with technology has brought Twitter to the forefront of online news delivery. 

One example cited by the article was the fact that news of Whitney Houston's death was viral via Twitter and Facebook as much as an hour before any mainstream news media picked up on it. The original tweet apparently came from a relative of the maid who found her body. 

Has the news cycle shrunk like AP's Tom Curley said in the article - from three hours pre-9/11 to 30 minutes today, and in reality for younger people three minutes? Should the news media even try to keep up with Twitter and other social media sites to report breaking news? 

Credibility has value. Most of us have received a Twitter or Facebook post that shook our world, only to discover later on that it was a hoax or mistake. Taking the time to digest breaking news and corroborate reports with trusted sources of information might lose the "scoop" value, but can result in a stronger and more informative story.