Poll: Younger Europeans More Critical of News Media

(AP Photo/Omer Kuscu, File)

(CN) – Adults under 30 in Western Europe are less likely to trust the news media according to a Pew Research Center poll released Tuesday.

Pew surveyed 16,114 adults in Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Tuesday’s results follow a study about news media and political identity.

In six of the polled nations, people under 30 give the news media lower marks for performance than those over 50.

In particular, younger Europeans don’t like how the news media cover immigration. In Denmark, only 49 percent of adults under 30 say news outlets do a good job reporting on immigration, while 74 percent of adults over 50 approve of the coverage.

Younger adults also give lower ratings to coverage of crime and the economy.

But they’re also more trusting of specific newspapers than older adults. For example, in the Netherlands 53 percent of adults under 30 trust the newspaper De Telegraaf compared with 36 percent of adults over 50.

Only 38 percent of adults under 30 use television as a news source, while 73 percent rely on online media to get their news. This is a drastic difference from the over-50 crowd, where 87 percent use the television as a news source.

The radio does not appear to be vital for Western Europeans, as only 57 percent of those over 50 and 33 percent of adults under 30 use it daily.

People over 50 are more than twice as likely to get their daily news from a print source, though younger Europeans rely on newspaper brands and likely use the papers’ websites or social media accounts to consume the news. Younger adults are twice as likely to get their daily news through social media.

Facebook is named as a news source for at least 5 percent of adults under 30 in seven of the polled countries. Twitter and Google are also mentioned as sources in the younger group.

The United Kingdom is the one country surveyed where a public broadcaster – the BBC – dominates as the main news source across all age groups.

While there are some stark differences in trust of the media and how news is consumed, most respondents in both age groups agreed news media are important.

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