Recently, I conducted a random online survey on where respondents typically get their news from and how likely they are to only view sources.

The questions were as follows:

Which (if any) are your primary news sources? Check all that apply.

Social Media: 89.5%

Newspapers/Magazines: 10.5%

Mainstream Broadcast: CNN, Fox, ABC, CBS, MSNBC): 63.2%

 Talk Shows (The Daily Show, The Colbert Report): 31.6%
Radio/Podcast shows: 26.3%
Blogs: 0%
How likely are you to view news sources that only support your views?
Not likely: 21.1%
Somewhat likely: 42.1%
Likely: 21.1%
Very likely: 15.8%
Keep in mind, however, that this was a relatively small sample (20). I kept the questions as objective as possible.

According to a Pew Research study in 2016,

“In 2016, Americans express a clear preference for getting their news on a screen – though which screen that is varies. TV remains the dominant screen, followed by digital . Still, TV news use is dramatically lower among younger adults, suggesting further shake-ups to come.

TV continues to be the most widely used news platform; 57% of U.S. adults often get TV-based news, either from local TV (46%), cable (31%), network (30%) or some combination of the three. This same pattern emerges when people are asked which platform they prefer – TV sits at the top, followed by the web, with radio and print trailing behind.”

My results were surprisingly higher for broadcast TV (63.2%), given that a majority of respondents of my poll were of a younger age group (18-25). Typically, this age group gets a majority of news from social media (which is also shown in my results – 89.5% reported they get news from social media).

The answers to the second question in my poll reflect recent scientific studies regarding how people choose their media. My results showed that people leaned towards viewing news that supports their views combined at 79% (somewhat like – likely – to very likely).

LiveScience reported on a few such studies.

“The new Ohio State study took that a step further by observing how 156 college students spent five minutes reading online magazine articles on a computer…As a result, she found that participants spent 36 percent more time reading articles that agreed with their point of view. They had a 58 percent chance of choosing articles that supported their views, as opposed to a 43 percent chance of choosing an article that challenged their view.”

There are tons of articles and studies showing how people gravitate towards news, I encourage you to look in to them.

In the next poll, we’ll look at how likely people are to research information they’ve seen on a meme or article.