AR; Is internet news replacing newspapers?

…and how about TV and radio? According to Benjamin Gaskins and Jennifer Jerit, replacement is an existing phenomenon – but it is not (yet) so widespread as sometimes thought. Their findings are based on a US national sample, representative of the whole adult population.

Replacement is most apparent in the case of newspapers, which 45% of respondents claimed to read less frequently after having started to use the internet as a source of news. What’s more, replacement hardly ever means switching from the print version of a given paper to its online counterpart; rather, aggregators and online news sites benefit from the flow of users giving up paper and ink for pixels and the screen.

The phenomenon is least apparent in the case of television, with about 24% of respondents claiming that they in fact watch TV news more often after having started to use the internet as a news source. And radio is somewhere in between newspapers and television.

It also seems to be the case that replacement happens because the internet is perceived as better in satisfying readers’ needs for variety and convenience.

Gaskins, Benjamin, and Jennifer Jerit (2012): “Internet News: It It a Replacement for Traditional Media Outlets?” in The International Journal of Press/Politics 17(2), 190-213.

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