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June 12, 2014

Established newspapers are still the most read news sources online

Survey finds that UK mainstream media favoured over sites like Buzzfeed and Huffington Post.

By Ben Sullivan

A new report has found that more traditional media organisations are still the main source of online news in UK.

Carried out by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, based from a YouGov survey of 18,000 people, over half of those questioned in the poll said that they read their news from a mainstream brand, with only 16% using online-only sources.

New media companies were more popular in countries such as Japan and the USA.

Only 7% of those polled in the United Kingdom said that they paid for news in the past year, with only 7% saying that they would be prepared to pay in the future. The Times and the Sun topped the list of subscription sites in the UK.

The number of people using desktops to consume news dropped, with smartphone and tablet use predictably increasing. The report found that readers who consume news on smartphones use fewer news sources. 37% of survey respondents said that they accessed just one news brand on their phone.

WhatsApp was a large player in the survey, with 26% of Spanish respondents claiming they use the Facebook-owned messaging app for news sharing. 35% of those polled in all the countries said that they use Facebook to consume news.

The reputation of a journalist also plays a key role in peoples’ news consumption. Respondents said that they are more likely to pay for news content if there is work written by a journalist they know.

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Nearly half of all UK Twitter users follow at least one journalist, with the top 5 UK journalist influencers being Caitin Moran, Jon Snow, Victoria Coren Mitchell, Robert Peston and Nick Robinson.


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