Social media top news source for under 25s
YOUNG people are almost twice as likely to discover a news story through social networks rather than search engines, according to a new study.
The first Reuters Institute Digital Report has found that 43 per cent of Britons aged between 16 and 24 are now much more likely to access news through social networks, such as Facebook, rather than search engines.
However, the report, which is aiming to chart the consumption of news in the digital age, found that only 11 per cent of over 45s access news stories through social media while 33 per cent still favour search engines.
Facebook has been deemed the most important social network for news – accounting for over half of all news sharing (55 per cent), followed by email (33 per cent) and Twitter (23 per cent).
Google+ and LinkedIn are not popular sites for sharing news.
Nic Newman, editor of the report, which is supported by the BBC and YouGov, said: “One in five of our UK sample share news stories each week via email or social networks – but in general Europeans are less enthusiastic than Americans about both the sharing of news and other forms of digital participation.”
Interestingly the report also found that 23 per cent of Britons are extremely interested in science and technology news, compared to the 19 per cent intrigued by business and financial news. In general people in the UK are most interested in celebrity news and less interested in domestic politics than those in the other countries surveyed.
Germans are the most interested in regional news – while people in the US are far more focused on news from their town or city.
The British and Germans are avid followers of sport – whereas the French are most interested art and culture.
People in Denmark show the strongest interest in international news (65 per cent) while Britons and Americans show the least (48 per cent and 44 per cent).
In the UK tablet computer’s popularity continue to rise. Fifty-eight per cent of British tablet owners access news from the device every week and they also access a large number of news sources than other online users.