Web a Leading News Source, Papers, TV Decline, Younger Ignoring ALL News

Congratulate yourselves as being among the leading edge in Americans interested in the news. According to a recent Pew survey 37 percent of America’s news consumers go to the Internet for their news. But it isn’t all good news for our sources of news. For one thing, this survey also shows that many of us are logging on at work. This is the sort of thing that could be hurt if more and more businesses ban Internet use, as some have.

Of course, there is more bad news for newspapers as well as TV viewers here, too.

Since the early 1990s, the proportion of Americans saying they read a newspaper on a typical day has declined by about 40%; the proportion that regularly watches nightly network news has fallen by half.

…Most of the loss in readership since 2006 has come among those who read the print newspaper; just 27% say they read only the print version of a daily newspaper yesterday, down from 34% in 2006.

Man, that is a huge loss. No wonder the papers are firing staffers by the hundreds all across the country!

But, the Internet is steadily growing as an important news source.

Since 2006, the proportion of Americans who say they get news online at least three days a week has increased from 31% to 37%. About as many people now say they go online for news regularly (at least three days a week) as say they regularly watch cable news (39%); substantially more people regularly get news online than regularly watch one of the nightly network news broadcasts (37% vs. 29%).

But, there was one tiny little portion of this survey that is ominous, not for the Old Media, but for ALL of us.

In spite of the increasing variety of ways to get the news, the proportion of young people getting no news on a typical day has increased substantially over the past decade. About a third of those younger than 25 (34%) say they get no news on a typical day, up from 25% in 1998.

This is scary. Young people increasingly do not care about the news? We are losing a whole generation, folks. Who is to blame for this? I say it is our fetid schools.

Also, one last bit. CNN has grown in viewers that claim they are members of the Democratic Party.

As in past news consumption surveys, the audiences for specific cable news outlets remain divided along political lines. Currently 51% of regular CNN viewers are Democrats, up from 45% two years ago. Nearly four-in-ten regular Fox News viewers are Republicans (39%), about the same as in 2006.

This obviously means that CNN is becoming less “balanced” every day if they are growing so much in one direction. Meanwhile, Fox News has held steady at 39% of the audience that claim to be Republican viewers. Looks like Fox has pretty much stayed on their “Fair and Balanced” mission.

Go on over to Pew and check out these interesting results.

(Also see a Timesonline.com article)

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