Internet overtakes print media in popularity, says new study

More people are increasingly preferring to surf the web for news and information rather than comb through newspapers and magazines.

A new study on media use in the US by independent ISP FreeSurf indicates that the Net is the third most favourite source for news, views and entertainment after the tube and radio. Newspapers and magazines have been relegated to fourth and fifth places. This has become a reality in 50 per cent of households surveyed, the study says.

More bad news for publishers. The study also found that change in media habits applied across all demographic graphs and was not confined to the young or affluent nor was it gender specific.

The report indicates that people spend thrice the time surfing, emailing and shopping or banking than they do reading a newspaper. The figure rises to five times more in the evening and an impressive six times more than magazines.

More disturbing for newspaper publishers is the fact that people in the crucial 16-34 age group which is the main focus of the advertising community spend 15 times as long on the Net as they do looking at a newspaper.

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