The approach that large traditional news organizations take in breaking news needs to be re-thought in the age of social media. Hurricane Sandy provided an example of how resources are often wasted by journalism organizations during breaking-news events while also demonstrating how vital authenticating coverage can be.
There were reporters standing on various shorelines letting us know that there was is a hurricane making landfall. Meanwhile, tens of thousands of YouTube videos were being uploaded and Twitter was a frenzy of micro-updates on the situation. Obviously, not all of this content was reliable, but these reports create a vibrant, real-time environment of news that mattered to people in a way that even a collection of large organizations could not accomplish.
What is needed are newsrooms that can filter, verify, curate, and amplify social media for their audiences, in addition to journalists reporting in enterprising and contextual ways. Andy Carvin at NPR excelled at this during coverage of the Middle East and I think we should and will see more of it in 2013.