October 25, 2014

New Report: State of the News Media 2012

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Released today by the Pew Research Project for Excellence in Journalism.

From the News Alert:

More than a quarter of Americans (27%) now get news on mobile devices, and for the vast majority, this is increasing news consumption, the report finds.  More than 80% of smartphone and tablet news consumers still get news on laptop or desktop computers. On mobile devices, news consumers also are more likely to go directly to a news site or use an app, rather than to rely on search — strengthening the bond with traditional news brands.

From the Major Trends:

Social media are important but not overwhelming drivers of news, at least not yet. Some 133 million Americans, or 54% of the online U.S. population, are now active users on Facebook (out of 850 million monthly active users globally). They also spend an average of seven hours there a month, 14 times the amount of time people spend on average on the most popular news sites.And the number of Twitter users grew 32% last year to around 24 million active users in the U.S. (500 million total accounts worldwide), the company reports. But the notion that large percentages of Americans now get their news mainly from recommendations from friends does not hold up, according to survey data released here. No more than 10% of digital news consumers follow news recommendations from Facebook or Twitter “very often,” the new survey finds. And almost all of those who do are still using other ways like going directly to the news website or app as well.

PEJ 12.03.12 Fig.5a LinksComeFrom 01 New Report: State of the News Media 2012

Even so, social media are an increasingly important driver of news, according to traffic data. According to PEJ’s analysis of traffic data from Hitwise, 9% of traffic to news sites now comes from Facebook, Twitter and smaller social media sites. That is up by more than half since 2009. The percentage coming from search engines, meanwhile, has dropped to 21% of news site traffic, from 23% in 2009.

Facebook users follow news links shared by family and friends; Twitter users follow links from a range of sources. Fully 70% of Facebook news consumers get most of their story links from friends and family.  Just 13% say most links that they follow come from news organizations. On Twitter, however, the mix is more even: 36% say most of the links they follow come from friends and family, 27% say most come from news organizations, and 18% mostly follow links from non-news entities such as think tanks. And most feel that the news they get on either network is news they would have seen elsewhere without that platform.

PEJ 12.03.12 Fig.1a FacebookNews 01 New Report: State of the News Media 2012
Direct to A Year in the News Interactive 2011

State of the News Media 2012: An Annual Report on American Journalism

  • Overview
  • Major Trends
  • Key Findings
  • Press Alert
  • Links to Sections Focusing on Newspapers, Interactive, Network, Cable, etc. Are Linked at the Top of Every Page
share save 171 16 New Report: State of the News Media 2012
Gary Price About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.