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Facebook is the New Major Source for News — At Least Among Millennials

And to think some people thought that it was Jon Stewart?

Pew Facebook Study

What’s the matter with kids these days? They rely on Facebook for their news, that’s what.

At least this is what a new study from the people at the Pew Research Center has determined. So move over Fox News; you are just the major source of news for senior citizens.

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And Edward R. Murrow can start rolling over in his grave now. Not Walter Kronkite, he’s still alive. But he probably has rolled his eyes a few million times since hearing this.

When asked whether they got political and government news from each of 42 sources in the previous week, the Pew study found that 61% of the so called millennial generation got their news from Facebook. CNN came in second at 44%.

60% of Baby Boomers, in contrast, cited television as their principle source for news.

Twitter lagged far behind Facebook with only 14% of millennials, 9% of Generation X and 5% of baby boomers getting their news from it.

pew facebook study 2

Also, 33% of millennials said that they get their news from Google News. Well at least in the case of Google, the news is a selection of links to a variety of news sources. Unfortunately, its users rely on Google to decide which web sites are the best and/or most important for the news.

The study also found that 87% of millennials are on Facebook, in contrast to just 57% of baby boomers.

So the real question that needs to be asked is, does any of this really matter? Well the people who work in traditional news media — television and print — certainly think that this is a bad sign. But then it should be asked what exactly is the source of the news which Facebook users are seeing?

Is it simply links to the websites belonging to CNN and The New York Times as well as other traditional media outlets? Or are the members of the younger generation following cheesy blogs filled with all manner of conspiracy theories and other dreck?

Remember, when CNN first became a major player in the world of news? Print media and the big three networks news divisions were aghast at the thought of being supplanted by 24 hour news channels.

So does this pew report mean that technology and lifestyles are simply changing or does it mean that there really is something wrong with kids these days.



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