Many traditional news companies are struggling with the digital innovation that threatens to sweep away the relationships they have enjoyed with readers and viewers for more than a century.
The 2014 edition of the Digital News Report, an annual publication issued by the Reuters Institure for the Study of Journalism, shows that while some established print and broadcast titles have made strides to meet the challenges represented by the shift to mobile consumption, the speed of change in habits is outpacing others.
In a nutshell:
- Only 11% of the 18,000 online consumers surveyed for the study stated to have paid for any type of online news in the past year. According to the study, the absolute number of people paying for digital news remained almost unchanged compared to last year. After last year’s study had revealed a significant uptick in paying news readers.
- Across all 10 countries surveyed by YouGov for the Reuters Institute, over a third (36%) of 18-24s say the smartphone is now their primary access point for digital news.
- The report reveals that young people in particular (18-35) increasingly rely on social sources like Facebook and Twitter to discover news stories. It also highlights the rise of WhatsApp as a significant new network for sharing and discussing the news.
- The report also highlights a growing trend towards journalists as a key driver of trust, engagement, and consumer loyalty. In some countries, notably the US, France and Spain, large numbers of people are identifying with journalists directly.
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