News on social
Just one-quarter of global consumers think social media do a good job in separating fact from fiction, compared to 40% for the mainstream news media, according to the Digital News Report 2017 from Reuters Institute and Oxford University. In addition, researchers says qualitative data suggest that users surveyed feel the combination of a lack of rules and viral algorithms are encouraging low quality and fake news to spread quickly.
Close to one-third of respondents say they often or sometimes avoid the news. For many, this is because it can have a negative effect on mood, for others, they feel they cannot rely on news to be true.
The report says social media are not something different but increasingly just part of the everyday media mix. Two-thirds of social media news users in the US, for example, also watch television news, while two-thirds also visit mainstream websites or apps. A mere 2% solely use social media for news in an average week.
In addition, outside the US and UK, growth in the use of social media for news seems to be flattening out. In most countries growth has stopped and we have seen significant declines in Portugal, Italy, Australia, and Brazil.