by Niamh Kirk
This week the second Digital News Report Ireland was published showing Ireland to be among the most digitised and socially active consumers of journalism in the world. *Disclaimer, I am about as associated with this report as anyone could be.
As the second year of the report, it is the first time there is a public longitudinal study into Irish news consumption and values available. The report contains more than 90 graphs and analysis over six sections including a demographic overview, platforms and devices, attitudes and trust, Irish brands, paying for news and ad blocking, gateways to news and social media. The report also contains three essays focusing on audiences, trust and social media. The online version is interactive and you can easily scan around for targeted reading.
It is in-depth, which is a diplomatic way of saying a mammoth read so here is a summary of the main findings.
- Ireland has high interest (74%) and frequency of access to news, 53% check several times a day.
- Traditional platforms like TV, -3% radio -3% and print -4% are contracting and digital operations and consumption are expanding.
- Use of the smartphone for news is on the rise, 5% in the past year.
- Half trust the news; fewer trust organisations 47%, and fewer again, journalists, 38%.
- RTE is the dominant news brand on all platforms, 51% TV, 30% radio and 42% of digital. RTE.ie’s and TheJournal.ie’s reach increased the most reach, each by 11%. Digital operations in most legacy news brands are expanding while traditional operations are contracting.
- Ad blocking is high, 30% and paying for news low 9%. As well as that most people who don’t pay are unwilling to in the future, 71%.
- The role of social media for news is growing, 7% in the past year. More than half, 52%, use it as a platform for news. Particularly for younger groups and women.
- But there are concerns about the impact of algorithms on what appears on news feeds and most people don’t really notice the brand that makes the news they are consuming.
The research was conducted by the Institute for Future Media and Journalism in DCU and the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland in association with the Reuters Institute of Journalism at Oxford University.
The launch of the event took place on Wednesday, June 15 in conjunction with the launch of the Global Report by the Reuters Institute. There a Storify of the launch and a light round-up of social media coverage of the event below. A summary of the finding, the report and the global report covering 26 countries can be downloaded from the FuJo Website.