Social Networks Funneling More News

xl-2014-social-media-sites-1News consumption on Facebook and Twitter has increased significantly in the last two years, according to a report released Tuesday by the Pew Research Center and the Knight Foundation.

Almost two-thirds (63 percent) of Twitter and Facebook members surveyed said they got news from those social networks. For Twitter, that’s an 11 point increase from 2013, when 52 percent of its members said they got news there. For Facebook it’s a 16 point jump since 2013, when 47 percent of its members said they looked to it for news.

“The main takeaway of the study is that even while the overall number of users has not changed much from 2013 to 2015, the portion of the users that are getting news in this space has increased substantially,” Amy Mitchell, director of journalism research at Pew, told TechNewsWorld.

However, the social networks remain a secondary source of news for most of their members. Six out of 10 members (60 percent) told the Pew researchers that the networks were “not a very important way” for them to get their news.

“Only 9 percent of Twitter people and 4 percent of Facebook people say it’s the most important way that they get news, which to me implies other sources — including more traditional sources — are still viewed as the most important source,” Jon Sotsky, director for strategy and assessment at the Knight Foundation, told TechNewsWorld.

“People encounter news in this space, as opposed to going there seeking news,” Pew’s Mitchell pointed out. “They’re going to a social network to do something else — and when they’re there, they come across news.”


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