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Whatsapp Now Top News Source In Many Countries

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Whatsapp Now Top News Source In Many Countries

The Digital News Report, a study by the Reuters Institute and Oxford University, found that growth in social media as a source of news is flattening out in certain markets.

WhatsApp is already the world’s most popular cross-platform messaging service. In some countries across the globe, it’s also serving a different purpose, it has gradually become their most trusted source for news.

The survey was done to over 71,805 people from 36 countries across the globe. 15 percent of the people said that they use WhatsApp to stay up to date with current affairs. That number might seem small at first glance but when you divide it by country, it’s a whole different story. We see that 51% of those in Malaysia, 46% of Brazilians and 39% of Chileans get their news from WhatsApp.

“The Internet and social media may have exacerbated low-trust and fake news,” said the researchers.

“However, we find that… the underlying drivers of mistrust are as much to do with deep-rooted political polarisation and perceived mainstream media bias.”

Key findings of the study are:

  • 24% of respondents think social media does a good job of separating fact from fiction.
  • Users feel the combination of a lack of rules and viral algorithms are encouraging low-quality and fake news.
  • There is a connection between distrust in the media and perceived political bias.
  • Almost a third of people say they often or sometimes avoid the news.
  • Smartphones are now as important for news inside the home as outside.
  • Across all countries, only around 10% of users pay for online news.
  • Ad-blocking growth has stalled on desktop and remains low on smartphones.

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Proud Zimbabwean Citizen, loving everything Tech related.

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