What the smart people are reading ...

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The results of a study done on 10 newspaper sites late last year, including the KnoxNews.com site I work on, are beginning to come out.

The study was done for the Newspaper Association of America by MORI Research. I haven't seen the local site data and analysis, but the national overview is interesting (a Powerpoint presentation is here).

Here's some takeaways on newspaper site heavy users the NAA's Melinda Gipson noted in a Presstime magazine piece:

  • 91 percent recently shopped online
  • 89 percent recently bought online
  • 90 percent are employed
  • 71 percent are online daily at work
  • 63 percent check news daily
  • 70 percent frequently bank online
  • 68 percent have home broadband
  • 52 percent have college degrees
  • Mean age: 39
  • Average income: $73,000
  • Hours online/week: 19

A couple more things that caught my eye:

In general, newspaper site users are heavily into both news and the Internet and are using newspaper sites in addition to other sites to get their news fix. Daily online newspaper readers are reading a diversity of sources.

Most users haven't figured out RSS feeds, the "really simple" moniker appears a misnomer for the average newspaper site user despite a host of really fine RSS tools.

And there's modest use of the whole range of what's called multimedia and interactive content. At least today, plain old text rules!

I didn't find it too surprising that Google news is growing as a competitor; it's built upon newspaper content. It's the not-AP AP. But Google does it well.

I'll be interested to see how our site specific nitty-gritty data compares to the other nine.