Big data Journalists: influence & interest
Released July 2013
Risques, Lutte anti-blanchiment & Corruption
E-réputation, Market insight & Competitive intelligence
Big data is an industry buzzword that most people are aware of but few seem to fully under-
stand. With around two billion people currently connected to the internet and the majority of
the remaining five billion likely to be connected in the next five years, big data is set to grow in
Big data refers to data sets that are large, complex and difficult to manage. The term also
encompasses the technical tools and practicality of handling such vast amounts of data.
As people store more personal information online, either in company sign-ups, social media
profiles or competition entries, big data becomes more of a reality for all types of business.
Cision teamed up with LexisNexis to create a list of the UK’s most influential ‘Big Data jour-
nalists’. With around 175,000 news articles from over 20,000 licensed newspapers, trade
journals and social media added to the Nexis database every day, we could draw on our own
data set Over 1,300 articles in the past month alone were tagged in the metadata as related
to the subject ‘Big Data’.
CisionPoint’s Influence Rating (calculated from a range of criteria including reach, followers,
frequency and engagement) was used to determine the most influential technology journal-
ists. Of this group, 11 wrote about big data at least once in the last two years. Together these
journalists wrote a total of 9,738 articles, with 76 addressing big data.
When selecting media contacts for press releases, PR Professionals should consider not
only influence but also engagement: how engaging does the journalist find the subject? For
example, Matt Warman is incredibly influential as consumer technology editor at The Daily
Telegraph (with a Cision Influencer Ranking of 99) but he has written about big data only once
in 1,574 articles – a proportion of just 0.1%.
Big data is a collection of data sets so large and complex that it becomes difficult to
process using on-hand database management tools or traditional data processing
applications. The challenges include capture, curation, storage, search, sharing,
transfer, analysis and visualization. The trend to larger data sets is due to the additional
information derivable from analysis of a single large set of related data, as compared to
separate smaller sets with the same total amount of data, allowing correlations to be
found to "spot business trends, determine quality of research, prevent diseases, link
legal citations, combat crime, and determine real-time roadway traffic conditions."
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Big data Journalists: influence & interest
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Tom Ritchie is the Managing Director at Cision UK, provider of integrated software to the PR,
marketing and communications professionals.
The top 11 journalists by proportion of big data articles are:
1. Sooraj Shah, reporter at Computing – 11.3%
2. Daniel Robinson, technology editor at v3.co.uk – 4.8%
3. Madeline Bennett, editor, v3.co.uk – 3.4%
4. Jemima Kiss, head of technology at the Guardian – 2.2%
5. James Ball, data editor at the Guardian – 1.4%
6. Charles Arthur, technology editor at the Guardian – 0.7%
7. Christopher Williams, technology, media & telecoms editor at the Telegraph – 0.6%
8. Chris Nuttall, technology correspondent at the Financial Times – 0.3%
9. Josh Halliday, media and technology reporter at the Guardian – 0.1%
10. Rory Cellan-Jones, technology correspondent at BBC Online – 0.1%
11. Matt Warman, consumer technology editor at The Daily Telegraph – 0.1%
While Sooraj Shah has written only 97 articles for computing, 11 have been about big data,
making him a key big data contact. Charles Arthur’s big data ratio is low because he has
written a total of 1,619 articles, somewhat eclipsing his 11 big data articles. Daniel Robinson
would be considered a key big data contact, having written 28 articles on the subject out of
his total of 582.
Worthy of note is the prominence of Guardian journalists on the list. With a dedicated
Datablog on their website, The Guardian has embraced the concepts of big data in their
own “Data Journalism”. Over the past two years, The Guardian has been the national paper
with the second most articles in the field of big data (41 articles across their print and web
editions only beaten into pole position by the Financial Times with 49 articles), which says a
lot about the topic and its audience. Newspapers and magazines work with content that has
been successful before (why change what works?) and including big data articles again and
again suggests it is a popular subject among the Guardian’s readership.
In your choice of contacts to pitch to or build relationships with, media influence is important
but ultimately it is their track record in covering your niche that may prove more valuable to
the success of your campaign.
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