Thursday, December 30, 2004

US Public Radio slips back again as news source

More people in the US use Internet as a news source, than listen to public radio. Local television news tops the list of sources where most people in the United States get their daily news, according to a new poll on media usage from the Gallup Organization.

According to poll results released Dec. 22, 51 percent of those surveyed said they turn to local television news daily. Nineteen percent said they view local TV news several times a week. Local newspapers ranked second on the list, with 44 percent turning to papers daily.

Cable news networks ranked third with 39 percent watching daily. Thirty-six percent watch the network nightly news every day.

Twenty-seven percent watch national television morning news shows and public television news programming every day. The poll also found that 21 percent of adults turn to talk radio for news, 20 percent rely on Internet sites, 17 percent listen to National Public Radio for news and 7 percent turn to national newspapers like The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.

The only news source to grow in use among the public was the Internet. In 2002, a Gallup poll found 15 percent relied on the Internet, 5 percent fewer than the 20 percent mark reached in this year’s poll.

Since 2002, there has been a decline in the reported use of public television news, nightly network news and local television news. Public television news declined by 8 percent, nightly network news has fallen by 7 percent and local news dropped 6 percent. Reliance on NPR as a source for news dropped 5 percent, which the Gallup Organization reported being slightly higher than the poll’s margin of error.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"Local" news on TV in the US is anything but. Most of the average local newscast is comprised of out-of-area reports picked up from APTN, CNN, Reuters TV or other sources. "If it bleeds, it leads" is the watchword in local TV news.

As for NPR's and PBS's failure to maintain an audience, both of these public broadcasters are so beholden to commercial "underwriters" that they are seemingly unable to take a stand on anything.

Any issue that contradicts an admimistration policy is addressed by at least one "expert" from the Heritage Foundation or the Cato Institute -- both conservative think tanks that pass ideology and innuendo off as fact, and are never challenged by the "journalists" conducting the interviews.

So, if "public" broadcasting in the United States is losing audience, they have no one to blame but themselves. It's Paddy Chayefsky's "Network" writ large.

73 and Happy New Year!

Elton Byington, NYC