Community value of public interest journalism: October 2019

Local news Journalism Public interest Community engagement News media Mass media Australia

This is a report of results of a survey commissioned by the Public Interest Journalism Initiative from Essential Media.

Essential Media conduct a fortnightly omnibus survey, in which five questions relating to public interest journalism were included. This survey was conducted from 24-29 October, 2019, and had 1,084 respondents (95% certainty for random sampling).

Key findings:

  • Australians are strong users of media, with commercial radio and television still leading (used by 55% daily), followed by social media (47%), then public radio and television (44%) and, finally, newspapers and magazines (25%).
  • Beyond media being interesting and entertaining, Australians also want their media to inform and educate and investigate issues of national importance.
  • Almost half of Australians do say they would pay higher taxes for increased public interest journalism.
  • Too little public interest journalism is seen as occurring in local government affairs, followed by state and territory and international affairs, with national affairs being better catered for.
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