LONDON: The use of social media networks such as Facebook to consume news has started to fall in the United States as many young people turn towards messaging apps such as Facebook-owned WhatsApp to discuss events, the Reuters Institute found.
Usage of Facebook, the world's largest social network, for news is down 9 percentage points from 2017 in the United States and down 20 points for younger audiences, according to the Reuters Institute survey of 74,000 people in 37
markets. "The use of social media for news has started to fall in a number of key markets after years of continuous growth," Nic Newman, research associate at the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, said in the Digital News Report. "We continue to see a rise in the use of messaging apps for news as consumers look for more private (and less confrontational) spaces to communicate," Newman said.
The research lays bare the volatility of consumer tastes as the news industry tries to grapple with the impact of the internet and smartphones that have transformed both the way people consume news and the way media companies make money.