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How Americans Are Getting Their News – Pew Research Reports

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I’m about to give you some news about the results of a Pew Research Center study released this week on American news consumption trends. So, if this is the first you’ve heard of thePew study, consider your source to be an online blog.

Pew’s major finding is that Americans are spending more time following the news than they have over much of the past decade, as a consequence of the fact that there are many more ways to get the news.

According to Pew, instead of replacing traditional news platforms (television, radio and print newspapers), Americans are increasingly integrating Internet and mobile digital technologies into their news consumption habits.

“The net impact of digital platforms supplementing traditional sources is that Americans are spending more time with the news than was the case a decade ago. As was the case in 2000, people now say they spend 57 minutes on average getting the news from TV, radio or newspapers on a given day. But today, they also spend an additional 13 minutes getting news online, increasing the total time spent with the news to 70 minutes. This is one of the highest totals on this measure since the mid-1990s,” Pew said.

First thing I should say is – thanks for spending some of your 70 minutes on this blog. Before I run out of time, here are some tidbits from way down at the bottom of the Pew release that your other sources of news (traditional or digital) might not include in their reporting:

  • In 2008 67% of liberal Democrats said they enjoyed the news a lot, compared with just 45% today.
  • While 26% of all Americans say they read a print newspaper yesterday, that figure falls to just 8% among adults younger than 30.
  • Most Facebook and Twitter users say they hardly ever or never get news there.
  • The public struggled with a four-question current events quiz — just 14% answered all four correctly. But about half (51%) of regular Wall Street Journal readers aced the quiz, as did 42% of regular New York Times readers.

Tim Sansbury is Vice President of Public Relations at JZMcBride and Associates.


Editor’s Note: The interesting stats Tim shares in this post should make marketers think about how they should be planning their next communications campaign. What are your thoughts?

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