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Does Reddit Outperform Facebook in News Consumption?

Posted on 11.15.2013

Which social network performs best when it comes to news consumption? It depends on how you look at it.

According to a new Pew Research study, 62 percent of Reddit users get news from the site, while the same is true for 52 percent of Twitter users and 47 percent of Facebook users. Just 30 percent of Google+ users get news on the site, while more Instagram users (13 percent) consume news than the members of Pinterest (3 percent). Despite these metrics, Facebook may still be the better performing network.

For instance, when it comes to the total percent of U.S. adults that access news on these sites, Facebook is the clear winner. The report looked at the proportions of those who get news alongside the total reach of the site. The data shows Facebook leading the way with 64 percent of the total U.S. population leveraging the site, and 30 percent getting news from the site. YouTube came in second, with 51 percent of the total U.S. population leveraging the platform and 10 percent consuming news. Comparatively, 16 percent of the U.S. adult population uses Twitter and just 3 percent uses Reddit. This shows that even though a larger percentage of Reddit members consume news, they also represent a much smaller audience.

               Social Media as a Pathway to News: Facebook Leads the Way

The study also looks into the overlap of news audiences on social media. The numbers show that 65 percent of news consumers obtain content from just one social network, and the social network is Facebook for 85 percent of those people. Moreover, 26 percent of consumers access content on two social sites, while 9 percent obtain news on at least three sites. It is important to note, however, that for those who get news on multiple social sites, Facebook is very likely to be one of the sites. In fact, more than half of adults who get news on Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn and Youtube also get news on Facebook.

                 Crossover News Use on Social Media

Some of the most interesting data from the study reveals the demographics of social network users, showing that each social network appeals to its own, unique audience. LinkedIn, for instance, seems to have the highest earning members who consume news, while Twitter has the youngest.

   Profile of the Social Media News Consumer

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