For the first time, more adults get news from social media than newspapers: poll

More adults say they get their news from social media platforms than from newspapers, though television is still the most popular news source overall, according to a Pew Research Center poll released Monday.

This is the first time that social media has surpassed newspapers since Pew began asking these questions in 2016.


Twenty percent of U.S. adults for the 2018 survey say they get their news via social media platforms, compared to 16 percent who say they turn to print newspapers. The number of adults using newspapers and social media was about equal in a 2017 poll.

The number of people using social media as a news source has increased over the past several years, while print newspaper readership has been on the decline, according to a recent Pew poll

Forty-nine percent of the poll's respondents said television is their preferred news source, a decline from 57 percent in 2016 but still far above the other news mediums. Thirty-three percent said they use news websites, while 26 percent said they listen to news radio.

Local television is the most popular, according to the poll, with 37 percent saying they tune in to their regional station often. Twenty-five percent of respondents said they watch the national evening network news shows.

There continues to be significant disparities in how Americans consume news according to their age. Eighty-one percent of those 65 and older get their news from television most often, compared to 16 percent of those 18–29 and 36 percent of those 30–49. 

And people ages 18–29 are four times more likely than those 65 years and older to get their news from social media. 

Those 65 and older still support print newspapers at the highest levels, with 39 percent getting their news from print most often. 

The poll was conducted from July 30 to Aug. 12 and surveyed 4,581 respondents. The margin of error is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.