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August 12, 2020updated 30 Sep 2022 9:30am

Poll suggests shift from print to digital will last beyond pandemic

By Freddy Mayhew

More people are consuming news digitally during the pandemic/lockdown and most expect this to last, according to a Press Gazette reader poll.

The UK Government’s instruction that people “stay at home” during the peak of the Covid-19 outbreak in March and April took its toll on print readerships, with circulations falling as a result.

Although there has been some signs of recovery among paid-for titles. Free newspapers continue to face an existential crisis.

News websites on the other hand have seen a boom in traffic.

We asked readers: “How have your newspaper consumption habits changed during the pandemic/lockdown, and do you think this will last?” in a poll that ran on from 6-11 August 2020.

Nearly half (48%) of the 367 respondents said they were now reading more digitally than in print and expected this to continue, while 29% said there had been no change in their news consumption habits.

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A combined total of 17% of respondents said they were actually reading more news in print during the pandemic/lockdown.

Press Gazette analysis of ABC print figures has shown that most regional dailies’ circulations fell by between 10% and 20% during lockdown.

Picture: Reuters/Mike Segar

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