Survey Reveals Students’ Preferences in News Sources

EUGENE- News can be found on multiple platforms, including the TV and Internet, but the desire and decision to view the news is an individual choice.

Reporting1Blog conducted an unscientific survey today regarding the attitudes individuals have towards journalism. The subjects were 10 junior and senior students at the University of Oregon. The survey questioned the students about the newspapers and websites they use to get their news, along with their opinions on how truthful news programs and papers are today.

The survey asked the students if they receive their news through newspapers. Seventy percent of the sources stated that they sometimes or never read a newspaper. Sometimes the reason for reading newspaper is only because it is conveniently available, such as with Ryan Rodewald, a junior majoring in economics at the U of O

Rodewald says he reads the paper “occasionally, but only when I am at my parents’ house because I don’t get any newspapers.”

More commonly students read the news through various Internet sites. The most popular sites mentioned were CNN.com and BBC.com. Only one of the subjects did not view any online news content.

Television news stations and programs are not viewed as much as the Internet news sites, but they have more of an impact than newspapers. About half of the students use the TV to receive news, whether it is from CNN, Fox News, or local news stations.

The students spent an average of three hours on the Internet each day. The stronger support and use for Internet news sites is perhaps attributed to the accessibility and immediacy the web allows for users.

The students were also asked if they thought news stories were truthful, regardless of their form of media.

“For the most part the facts are right, but they put a spin on it by who they are influenced,” says Erika Hackmott, a junior in the English department. Other students, such as Paesha Nelson, agreed with Hackmott. She says news stories are truthful “to a point. The don’t usually show the whole story.”

The students were also asked who they considered to be a journalist from a list with the names Stephen Colbert, Glenn Beck, Rachel Maddow, and Ann Curry. The question turned out to be more trivia than opinion.

“I have only ever heard of Stephen Colbert,” says junior Tyra Jansson. Rodewald says he guesses that Glenn Beck is a journalist only because he has heard his name before.

Hannah Corum, a psychology major, doesn’t consider Colbert to be a journalist, but says, “If a person can take facts and make satire out of them or make them funny, that shows that they really understand what’s going on.”

About Susie Bartel

I am a Senior at the University of Oregon majoring in journalism (magazine) and minoring in multimedia.
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