Arianna Huffington, whose eponymous site is uber-optimized for social media, says the media is too obsessed with “going viral” instead of reporting substantive news. In a lengthy column, Huffington acknowledges that HuffPost is “as aggressive as any media outlet in using social media,” but warns:
The media world’s fetishization of social media has reached idol-worshipping proportions. Media conference agendas are filled with panels devoted to social media and how to use social tools to amplify coverage, but you rarely see one discussing what that coverage should actually be about. … Social media are a means, not an end. And going viral isn’t “mission accomplished,” regardless of what it was that went viral.