Twitter users in the United States may have noticed something new yesterday: next to the timeline, a small window displayed a livestream of Miami news station WSVN 7's coverage of the active shooter situation then unfolding at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. The stream was the debut of a Twitter initiative to show live coverage of breaking news events.
Users who clicked on the livestream landed in a feed of tweets algorithmically determined to be related to the news. While launching a new feature on the back of such a serious event may seem morbid, Twitter video GM Kayvon Beykpour said the launch was part of Twitter's continuing effort to provide its users with credible information. "By pairing live video with the conversation on Twitter, there is no faster way to see what’s happening in the world," he told BuzzFeed in an emailed statement.
Footage for the streams will be sourced from local news stations partnered with Twitter. At its peak, yesterday's stream had more than 50,000 simultaneous viewers.
According to BuzzFeed, the feature is "currently rolled out across the platform," but the feature may be web-only for now. There's currently no stream to speak of on Twitter's desktop site or the Twitter app, but if you want to see what it looks like in action, BuzzFeed's coverage has a couple of screen grabs.
- BuzzFeed News