Long Live the Traditional News Outlet
March 18, 2014
March 18, 2014
A rise in social media over the past few years has people wondering whether the demise of the traditional news outlet is near. The Media Insight Project, an initiative of the American Press Institute, conducted a survey with American adults to figure out how they consume their daily news. The main takeaway? Social media is adding to, rather than replacing, traditional news outlets by offering people different ways to consume the news.
The way people decide what kind of outlet they are going to visit to get their news is based on a number of factors: daily routine, story topic, and how time sensitive the content is. Tom Rosenstiel, Executive Director of the American Press Institute, was recently quoted as saying, “People of all generations are picking and choosing the media that fits their needs at the moment and the story they’re trying to follow.”
Want proof? 75 % of those surveyed said they follow the news. Half said they have no preferred means of getting their news. 60% of Americans find it easier to keep up with the news today using 4 to 5 different sources than it was 5 years ago with only 1 or 2.
There is no longer one platform that dominates the dissemination of national news. You can watch TV, log into Facebook, or scroll through BuzzFeed to find the most up-to-date information. The Lance Armstrong interview on The Oprah Winfrey Show was one of the last examples of there being a major announcement or story on a specific platform. Since then, it has been dispersed throughout multiple outlets and channels.
It may seem as if we’re completely immersed in the digital age, but the truth is that people are still going to read newspapers and watch TV news no matter what is trending on Twitter. Young adults are more apt to use social media for their news simply because their definition of news extends to what is currently trending; they are not solely focused on national and global “hard news” events.