Monday, March 23, 2009

NC voters prefer TV news over newspapers, online news

By Katherine Rumbaugh, PPP Spring Fellow

Even as technology progresses, print newspapers switch over to online versions, and more people turn to blogs and news websites, 56% of people in North Carolina report that the television is their favorite source for news.

This trend is, surprisingly, even stronger among the people who are supposed to be the most tech-savvy, the 18-29 age group; 65% of them report that the TV is their primary news source. Only 20% said they prefer reading an actual newspaper and 15% said they prefer online news.

Democrats are more likely to read a newspaper than Republicans, 63% of whom said they prefer TV news.

So, the idiot box is the most popular news source, and the most popular television news outlets are the ones with (in my opinion) some of the biggest idiots: cable news networks. 42% of respondents said they prefer cable news like CNN, FOX News, and MSNBC over regular broadcast networks (23%) and local TV networks (34%).

Between a national newspaper, like the NYT or WSJ, and a local paper, people overwhelmingly favor their local newspaper, 87% to 13%.

Among online news sources, the most popular are websites affiliated with newspapers, at 43%. That's a good sign for papers that might eventually have to switch to a solely online version. Blogs are only favored among about 6% for online news. That's probably because, at least so far, bloggers mostly comment on existing news rather than produce original reporting. Perhaps we need to step up our game?

Full results here


Laura said...

I'm mystified by the fact your survey didn't even ask about radio, which is far more pervasive than even TV.

If you check out the Pew State of the Media report released last week, you'll see radio news has a big following, both public and commercial/talk. The Pew study is available online at

Anonymous said...

Tom and Katherine,

I have to write about something not related to this topic but as journalist, you do have the opportunity to consider it.

This is in regards to Tom's article on Community garden of carrboro in 2007. I did post my comment and than realize that, it was an old article. Here we go

Same Dan coleman, who is talking about community garden is not really interested in preserving the remaining farms in carrboro

As you have published this article, will you be interested to write an article on Peppermint Spring farm in carrboro which has gone through so much hurdles from mayor chilton and Board of Alderman(including Dan Coleman)

Is developer mind set of the mayor and Board of Alderman getting in the way of Community garden mind set?

People of carrboro deserve to know the truth

Web Statistics