Survey: Two of Three Adults Use Search For News
The report, "How America Searches," based on a Harris Interactive survey of more than 2,000 online adults, also found that most searches are conducted with specific topics in mind. When asked why they used a search engine, 88 percent of respondents said they did so to research specific topics; 75 percent searched for directions or maps; and 64 percent were seeking news or information about current events.
Of the approximately 1,300 adults who said they used search engines to look for news, almost half--45 percent--said they specifically sought alternative viewpoints, while 42 percent wanted additional information.
The report also found that more than four out of 10 users--44 percent--didn't know the difference between sponsored and organic listings. That percentage varied by age and gender, with 53 percent of men reporting that they understood the distinction between paid and natural results, compared to 36 percent of women. Almost half of respondents ages 18 to 34 (47 percent) said they were familiar with the difference between sponsored and natural search, compared to 45 percent of respondents ages 35 to 44 and 42 percent of those ages 45 to 54; just 38 percent of those over 55 said they were familiar with the paid-natural distinction.