Adult News Viewers Slow At Local Newscasts

The percentage of U.S. adults who “often get their news from local TV” dropped sharply from 46% in 2016 to 37% in 2017, according to research done in August by the Pew Research Center.

The decline is less severe in other areas of TV. Network TV dropped from 30% to 26% ; cable TV, witnessed the least drop among heavy adults viewers, from 31% to 28%.

Local TV still commands better results when looking at younger viewers -- 18% of those 18-29 get their news “often” from local TV newscasts; for cable TV, this is 10%; and network TV programming, 8%.

Adults 50+ make up the highest share of these heavy news viewers.

For those 50 to 64 years old, local TV is at a 47% share, while network TV and cable TV each get hit 35%. For those 65+, cable TV commands a 58% share; local TV, 57%; and network TV, 49%.



Local TV gets the highest share of those viewers with strong political leanings -- with some 36% of Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents and 38% of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents.

This compares to network TV at 30% of Democrats/Democratic-indie leaners and 21% of Republicans/Republican indie leaners. Cable TV comes in at 26% of Democrats/Democratic-indie leaners and 32% of Republicans/Republican-indie leaners.

The data in the Pew study was compiled on Augist 8 through August 21, 2017, with a survey conducted among 4,971 respondents, a nationally representative panel of randomly selected U.S. adults. The margin of sampling error for the full sample of 4,971 respondents is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

The response rate was 74% — 4,971 responses among 6,722 individuals in the panel.

1 comment about "Adult News Viewers Slow At Local Newscasts".
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  1. Ed Papazian from Media Dynamics Inc, January 8, 2018 at 4:17 p.m.

    What should be looked at---even in this sort of "impressionistic" research----is a longer term trend. Of course some respondents will claim that their reliance on various news sources is, in effect, down, compared to 2016 when Trump's crazy antics and related political circus acts drove news viewing to new heights. But what did the same kind of survey find in 2015 and earlier? That's the real question.

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