Over half of Americans still head to TV for news, poll says

Print is a distant third, well behind the 21 percent of people who connect to the Web to read their news, according to a Gallup survey.

A look at how age affects the news.
A look at how age affects the news. eMarketer

Television is still your favorite way to absorb the news, according to a recent poll from Gallup.

The survey revealed that 55 percent of Americans took to their televisions to get their news fix in June. A quarter of the respondents provided no specifics on where they obtained their news from television networks, but Fox was the top vote-getter among viewers, with 8 percent news market share. CNN was close behind with 7 percent share, followed by 4 percent for local news.

The results were based on a poll of 2,048 U.S. adults conducted June 20 to June 24.

The Internet was the second-most popular place for Americans to find the news, with 21 percent saying they went to the Web to see what was happening in the world in June. Surprisingly, 2 percent of respondents used social networks to read about the news, indicating the growing importance of services like Facebook and Twitter for information-gathering.

As for print and radio -- the older ways to get news? Things aren't going so well. Just 9 percent of people head to print publications to get their news, and only 6 percent go to the radio. The New York Times is the top print source, and NPR is the top radio source for news.

Not surprisingly, age plays a role in how people access news. Although all age groups can agree that they get most of their news from television networks, younger people -- especially those between the ages of 18 and 49 -- are most likely to hit the Web to see what's going on in the world. Just 6 percent of Americans over 65 will do the same.

In addition, eMarketer discovered that older people are keeping print alive, with 18 percent of those over 65 years of age reading the newspaper, compared with just 7 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 29 and 6 percent of Americans aged 30 to 49.

One other interesting tidbit from eMarketer: "A much greater proportion of employed Americans favored the Internet as their main source of news (26 percent), compared with those who were unemployed (15 percent)."

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About the author

Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.

 

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