2019 Volume 68 Issue 12 Pages 20-45
Following the results of “Public Opinion Survey on Information and Media Use” held in June 2018, the author reports how people select media and acquire news and other information on political, economic, and social trends, amid concerns that the spread of the internet and social media services are creating a divide in the use of social information infrastructure.The following trends were confirmed by the survey. There is a huge gap between the youth and the elderly regarding the media platforms they use on daily basis, showing a generational divide in the usage of information sources. More than 80% of the respondents think “society today has too much information,” and young people are notably selective about information, saying, “I need to know only what I need to know.” Furthermore, young people show low interest in information on politics, economy, and society, with fewer information genres attracting their interests.Regarding information sources, television is used by people in a wide age range while social media services, from which users can selectively acquire information they are interested in, are overwhelmingly popular among the youth. The survey also finds a larger number of people trust TV news more than internet or social media news, but more than 40% cited “being edited” and “containing communicators’ intentions” as untrustworthy aspects of TV news. Meanwhile, “clear information sources” was the most-cited trustworthy aspect, which indicates that television’s basic function is being appreciated as it is becoming easier to encounter fake news on the internet nowadays.