Feeding the broadband news junkies

Howard Finberg did a nice piece on the new Pew study yesterday and was left wondering at least two questions. Jay Small said today the report raised a related issue with him.

Rob Runett summed up the major findings of the study:

  • 50 million Americans turn to the Internet for news on a typical day

  • Broadband penetration in homes fuels growth of online news consumption

  • 32 percent of respondents visit local newspaper sites (the number rises to 36 percent of broadband users), compared with 39 percent who go to Yahoo! and Google (44 percent of broadband users)

  • 54 percent of Internet users who get news online have registered on a news site, but only 6 percent have paid for news-related content online

  • Broadband users under the age of 36 are most likely to have gone online for news yesterday compared with 36- to 50-year-old users and 50-and-over online users

Finberg zeroed in on the under age 36 broadband news junkies:

Why should so much attention be paid to this group of users? For many, the under age 36 is a look into the future of media consumption. These are the “always on, always hunting for more sources” users.

We know they want news and information. We know they are not likely to turn to newspapers -- or TV -- as their first source of information. The questions revolve around what it is they want and how best to give it to them. We better figure ouf the puzzle pretty quick.

Rusty Coats of Tampa Bay Online has sage advice at the end of the Finberg piece that ought to be recommended reading for all of us in the online news biz.

Give both these pieces a read.

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