Friday, 14 December 2007

Glimmer of hope?

Gloom and doom, the-sky-is-falling news about media trends in the past couple of years is contradicted in a new commissioned study.

It seems traditional media is not dying.

The poll, commissioned by the Information Technology Association of Canada and IDC Canada shows 95% of Canadians still consider radio, television and newspapers as their top choices for trusted news sources.

"A glimmer of hope?" ponders Ian Harvey, a former Toronto Sun vet who sent TSF this report on the new poll:

OTTAWA, ON - December 12, 2007 - The imminent death of traditional media has been greatly exaggerated.

The National Media Choice and Trust Poll commissioned by (ITAC) and conducted by IDC Canada reveals that despite our fascination and reliance on digital content, 95% of respondents continue to turn to traditional media (newspapers, radio and television) for general news and 82% for breaking news.

The report says traditional media has had decades to become part of Canadians' daily lives, and this familiarity still works in its favour.

"It's clear that Canadians are traditionalists, and overwhelmingly turn to television, newspapers, and radio for trusted news," said Bernard Courtois, president of ITAC. "But 65% cent of Canadian households have high speed Internet, and this high level of adoption is causing a shift in behaviour, as Internet news outlets begin to creep into the media mix."

Courtois says "As was the case when broadcast media came along to challenge print, any new news media is viewed with skepticism, and the Internet is no different. Once the industry begins to establish trusted checks and balances, and online news media becomes mainstream, this medium will become a more credible news source for the Canadian public."

According to the survey:

*42% of respondents access some form of online media for general news;

*21% of respondents turn to online sources for breaking news

*Larger families access and trust online more than smaller families

*French respondents trust online media more than their English counterparts

*Almost 50% Younger Canadians (18 - 24) are likely to get their information online

Credibility remains a major challenge for online news sources. Only 11.5% of survey respondents believe that online media is unbiased, and12% believe that online media is accurate.

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