Millennials and the news

[To comment: larry at larry litwin dot com]

Read this in this morning Sunday Courier-Post. The link to Phaedra Trethan’s full commentary is below and her email is:

The headline is: 

Trethan: Report shows millennials engaged with news

Here are some excerpts to whet your appetite:

I’m pretty sure my generation, Generation X, is the last that will view newspapers as a part of our everyday lives. And fewer of us do as we get older and more pieces of our lives migrate online.

And millennials, the generation after mine, just don’t value mainstream media like their elders did, right? They’re too busy shooting selfies and Instagramming all their meals to worry about Syria and Ferguson and Camden, right? (Btw, millennials are those born after 1980.)

So anyone under the age of 50 still working for a mainstream news outlet should kiss off any future in the business, right?

Well, no.

According to a report released March 16 by The Media Insight Project — a joint effort among the Associated Press, The University of Chicago’s NORC Center for Public Affairs Research and the American Press Institute — millennials are just as engaged with news as their older cohorts, and even if the ways they get their news differs, they are just as aware of who’s providing it and where to find it. The study found 69 percent of millennials get news on a daily basis (40 percent said they do so several times a day) and 45 percent of them regularly follow five or more of what the surveyors call “hard news” topics. 

“Millennials regularly follow a wide range of topics, and virtually everyone’s information diet in this generation involves a mix of hard news (which the study defines as government, business, international news, health care, crime and the environment, among other topics), soft news, and more practical or news-you-can-use topics.”

They’re also savvy consumers of news.

The study notes millennials’ unique position as the first generation to live almost its whole life online: For them, “the digital revolution does not represent disruption. It represents the norm, and, to a significant degree, their generation’s opportunity.”

Millennials recognize the importance of news for a reason that gives even this cynical Gen-Xer a glimmer of hope for the future of journalism.

“Partly because technology is so altering modern life, their generation is changing the world for the better,” the study notes, “and they are excited to see how that is happening.

Take a few minutes and read Phaedra’s complete column. It is insightful.

[To comment: larry at larry litwin dot com]