ThinkNewsBrands: ‘Australians’ engagement with news is very healthy’ despite reports


The report shows over half of Australians (51%) are accessing news more than once a day, a 3pp increase from last year.

ThinkNewsBrands states that media coverage of the University of Canberra’s 2024 Digital News Report has painted a bleak picture of the Australian news industry, despite the report showing the opposite to be true.

The organisation said the coverage focused on a rise in “news fatigue” and in people who “avoid the news” and while the results are understandable “given the febrile nature of the world in recent years”, they are at odds with the expressed behaviours the report reveals.

The report shows over half of Australians (51%) are accessing news more than once a day, a 3pp increase from last year.

News consumption among Baby Boomers has also seen a substantial increase (7pp) since last year. Heavy news consumption was strong among women and Gen Z who increased by 5pp respectively.

While consumption of national newspapers remained stable, regional and local newspapers rose.

The report showed that the proportion of people paying for online news dropped by 1pp to 21% and ongoing subscriptions remained stable at 11%.

ThinkNewsBrands says this is a strong result given the cost-of-living crisis and shows the value Australians place in news.

By comparison, according to National Australia Bank data, 37% of Australians have cut back on a streaming service in the past three months and 33% have trimmed spending on subscriptions for magazines, apps and other goods and products.

ThinkNewsBrands CEO, Vanessa Lyons says that a closer look at the data tells a much happier story than media coverage would suggest.

“The consumption figures in this report are really strong and show that Australians’ engagement with news is very healthy,” she said.

“The fact that payment for news has remained relatively stable in a cost-of-living crisis while we’re seeing cut backs on everything from streaming services to app subscriptions is a testament to how important news really is to Australians.”

See also: Australians more uncomfortable with AI-produced news compared to global average
See also: 25% of Aussies use social media as main news source, despite Meta claims

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