A Mile Wide, an Inch Deep: Online News and Media Use in the 2019 UK General Election

42 Pages Posted: 19 May 2020

See all articles by Richard Fletcher

Richard Fletcher

University of Oxford - Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism

Nic Newman

University of Oxford - Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism

Anne Schulz

University of Oxford - Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism

Date Written: February 5, 2020

Abstract

This report presents the most detailed and comprehensive analysis to date of news use during the 2019 UK General Election. It is based on a unique tracking study of the online news consumption of 1,711 people aged 18-65 across mobile and desktop devices throughout the campaign (spanning six weeks), combined with surveys with a subset of 752 panellists fielded before and after the vote, asking them about the relative importance of offline and online news and their attitudes to the media and politics more widely. Overall, much elite and public debate around the role of the media in politics before, during, and after the election has focused on the risks of political polarisation (especially around the issue of Brexit, and with two divisive party leaders). Our analysis here suggests that the bigger issue may be that many people do not engage much with news at all, spending just 3% of their time online with news.

Keywords: digital news, news, social media, mobile, General Election 2019, UK politics

Suggested Citation

Fletcher, Richard and Newman, Nic and Schulz, Anne, A Mile Wide, an Inch Deep: Online News and Media Use in the 2019 UK General Election (February 5, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3582441 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3582441

Richard Fletcher (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism ( email )

13 Norham Gardens
Oxford, OX2 6PS
United Kingdom

Nic Newman

University of Oxford - Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism ( email )

13 Norham Gardens
Oxford, OX2 6PS
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://reutersinstitute.politics.ox.ac.uk/

Anne Schulz

University of Oxford - Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism ( email )

13 Norham Gardens
Oxford, OX2 6PS
United Kingdom

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