Monday, August 07, 2006

Not your father’s paper

1985 doesn’t feel all that far away, if you’re beyond a certain age. Ronald Reagan started his second term, the hole in the ozone layer was discovered, and Rock Hudson died of AIDS. And yet, judging by newspaper reading habits, we’re now living in a completely different world.

In 1985, 45 percent of newspaper readers spent some or a lot of time reading about TV/movie/entertainment schedules; it’s down to 29 percent today.

In that year, 44 percent read the business and financial news; it’s grown to 60 percent.

I was most struck by two topics that didn’t even appear on the list in 1985. Nowadays, 63 percent read articles on technology, and 77 percent follow health and medicine topics. Technology, health and medicine are so much part of “our modern world” that it’s hard to imagine that they were barely covered a mere twenty years ago.

Source: A Pew Research Center study on the changing news landscape

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