Instagram will top Twitter as a source for news, survey says

Use of the Facebook-owned app for news has doubled since 2018, a report says.

Abrar Al-Heeti Technology Reporter
Abrar Al-Heeti is a technology reporter for CNET, with an interest in phones, streaming, internet trends, entertainment, pop culture and digital accessibility. She's also worked for CNET's video, culture and news teams. She graduated with bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Though Illinois is home, she now loves San Francisco -- steep inclines and all.
Expertise Abrar has spent her career at CNET analyzing tech trends while also writing news, reviews and commentaries across mobile, streaming and online culture. Credentials
  • Named a Tech Media Trailblazer by the Consumer Technology Association in 2019, a winner of SPJ NorCal's Excellence in Journalism Awards in 2022 and has three times been a finalist in the LA Press Club's National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards.
Abrar Al-Heeti
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Instagram is likely to overtake Twitter as a source for news within the next year, according to the 2020 Reuters Institute Digital News report. Use of the Facebook-owned app for news has doubled across age groups since 2018, the report says. 

Instagram, which in recent years has expanded to include features like Stories and IGTV, now reaches more than a third of those surveyed weekly and two-thirds of people under the age of 25. As people spend more time on Instagram, news has played a bigger role on the app. Eleven percent of people across age groups use Instagram for news, while 12% currently use Twitter for that purpose, the report found. 

More than two thirds of people use their phones to get news weekly, the survey says, and those who use their phones as a primary means of getting the news are more likely to access that information via social networks. 

In the US, 26% of 18- to 24-year-olds used Instagram as a source of news about the coronavirus in April. By comparison, 14% used Snapchat and 11% used TikTok. 

Still, just 26% of people said they trust social media such as Facebook and Twitter when it comes to news and information about the coronavirus.