Pew: Internet overtakes as news outlet

Bit late on this one but only came across it today after reading yet another post on the skills PR peeps need these Pew 2008days  (my thoughts on which will be featured in an upcoming post), but at the end of last year, Pew shockingly revealed that for the first time the internetz had overtaken all other forms of media as the place  ppl get their news. Television remains the leading place to get national and international news.

My beef with this is the same beef I had with the Fleishman-Hillard Digital Influence Index study which came out in summer last year, which is mainly there appears to be some confusion between platform and content. Saying that most Americans now get their news from the net is about as useful as saying that I get most of my news from the nice old chap who runs the Kandy Kiosk at my local tube station. What we need to know, or rather what I want to know, is which sites are they getting their news kick from  – is it the online version of the paper or a forum, a variety of bloggers or are they watching reruns for the Daily Show online?

Where people are getting there news from is far more important than what format they receive it in, mainly because if it isn’t from the online versions of what we regard as the classic industrial media then it truly is screwed, and we really need to look at ways of helping ppl to evaluate news from non-journalistic sources. Otherwise we’re just going to have to used to stories such as Steve Jobs’ having a heart attack or very old plane crashes bumping the stock market a lot more often.

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