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common challenges

that newspapers encounter when they join TikTok

maintaining the journalistic function

December 4th


It is not uncommon for newspapers, in an attempt to adapt to the platform, to produce content that has everything to do with TikTok, but nothing to do with journalism.

These are videos that usually follow the recent trends of the network, such as dance challenges, voice acting, the use of funny audios. Perhaps the videos perform well on the platform, and this can be important in building a community of solid followers.

But it is also possible to build it without these contents. When the French newspaper Le Monde decided to join TIkTok in June, they published a text talking more about the decision. Among other things, the text showed two lists:

We are a family owned and operated business.

What we will do:

  • Original content;

  • Five publications per week;

  • Two journalists to incorporate them;

  • Verification, to combat misinformation;

  • Explanation and context to understand important topics;

  • Lightness and a little humor (we are not animals), but without compromising the reliability of the information provided;

  • We will discuss with our readers and answer your questions transparently.

What we will not do:

  • Publications intended to be frivolous under the pretext of being "aimed at young people";

  • Recycled content;

  • "Lipsync", spectacular choreography or beauty tutorials (this is not our specialty, we leave it to the professionals).

We are a family owned and operated business.

Link to original: Le Monde

Translated text: here

We are a family owned and operated business.

This kind of preset of what the newspaper's goals are on the network means that the content that will be produced can follow a logical unit - not related to the theme of the videos themselves, but the role they will play, the reason why they are being done. (It is likely that the list will need to be modified as journalists understand what works and what doesn’t work for the newspaper account.)

These goals, of course, nor will ever be the same. While Le Monde is betting on content production aimed at TikTok (read more about them here), many newspapers use the network to build a brand in the context of a younger audience, such as the Washington Post and the Jornal from Record.

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