More Americans Look Online For News

    March 3, 2008

The majority of Americans (67%) say that traditional journalism does not provide what Americans want from their news, a new We Media/Zogby Interactive poll shows.

The survey found that more than half of Americans (70%) think journalism is important to the quality of their communities but 64 percent are dissatisfied with the quality of journalism in their communities.

Close to half of respondents (48%) said their main source of news and information is the Internet, a 40 percent increase over a year ago. Younger adults were most likely to say the Internet was their main source, 55 percent of those 18 to 29 say they get their news and information online, compared to 35 percent of those 65 and older.

The oldest adults are the only age group to prefer a traditional news source besides the Internet, with 38 percent saying they get their news from television. Overall, 29 percent said they get most of their news from television, 11 percent-cited radios and 10 percent said newspapers.

Only 7 percent of those 18 to 29 years old get their news from newspapers, while more than double (17%) over the age of 65 prefer n newspapers as their main source of information.

Web sites are thought to be a more important source of news, 86 percent of Americans said Web sites were an important source of news. With 56 percent saying that Web sites are very important. The majority also view television (77%), radio (74%) and newspapers (70%) as important sources for news.

 "For the second year in a row we have documented a crisis in American journalism that is far more serious than the industry’s business challenges – or maybe a consequence of them," said Andrew Nachison, co-founder of iFOCOS, a media think tank.