More Americans now follow local, national news closely; teens, adults both rely most on TV for news

Pew | Poynter
Buried in the latest Pew research on where Americans turn for local news, there’s this important trend: 72 percent of respondents — nearly three-quarters — say they follow local news closely most of the time, whether or not something important is happening. That’s up from 57 percent in 2008. More people are also following national news closely most of the time, with 68 percent saying they do currently, compared to 55 percent in 2008. Despite two wars and other unrest throughout the Arab Spring, fewer Americans (56 percent) are following international news closely than did in 2009 (62 percent).

Interestingly, while Americans are following news more closely, they’re also more distrustful of the media than ever, with 75 percent saying journalists can’t get their facts straight and 60 percent saying they’re biased. People believe their particular sources for news are less biased than the media generally, though.

The latest Pew research reveals that adults rely on the same top news source as teens, if you compare Monday’s report with a Knight report released earlier this month. Both groups depend first on local TV, with newspapers as the fourth source. The groups diverge in the middle, where adults rely on “word of mouth” and teens rely on the digital version of the same: social media. Adults also rely on radio, while teens rely on video.

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