By Jolie Lee

Last week Twitter’s co-founder Biz Stone said he envisions a “Twitter News Service” that partners with other news organizations, Reuters reports. Twitter could help news organizations get in touch with people on the ground, Stone said in Reuters.

Already, people are using Twitter as a kind of news wire opposed to a social network, according to Korean researchers.  Computer World reports that the research team gathered more than 41 million user profiles, 106 million tweets and followed more than 4,200 trending topics via hash tags.

More than half the tweets were about breaking news, according to the study. Researchers compared the first mention of breaking news in Twitter vs. CNN. The CNN Headline News site had a first mention more than half the time, but Twitter also had a first mention a “considerable number of times,” according to Computer World.

But how would a Twitter news service function?

Mashable’s Ben Parr argues that Twitter shouldn’t report the news but focus on what it does best – delivering information quickly and widely.

Parr calls Twitter an “information network,” opposed to a social network. He writes that he sees a Twitter news service as “selecting and repackaging relevant tweets based on queries from traditional news outlets.” In other words, a Twitter news service is not a Twitter news network, with Stone sitting behind an anchor desk delivering the news.

I’m curious about how the specifics of a Twitter-news organization relationship would work, with Twitter as the data provider and the news organization as the data curator. What kind of data could Twitter provide? Would Twitter sell this data to news organizations?

And going along with the argument by the Korean researchers that Twitter already acts as a news feed, what exactly could Twitter provide news organizations that they – and the public as well – can’t already access now on their own?

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