Canadians continue to rely on newspapers

Readership of Canadian newspapers is at an all-time high.

According to a survey conducted by Totum Research in February, 88 per cent of Canadians read a newspaper, in either print or digital format, at least once a week.

That’s a three per cent increase from the inaugural study, which was conducted in 2012.

“Given heightened levels of global mistrust, we’re seeing a clear and continued affinity for the reliable reporting that newspapers provide,” said Bob Cox, chair of News Media Canada, which is the voice of Canada’s news media industry.

“Newspapers continue to be the go-to source for credible, trusted and independent news, in both print and digital formats.”

Unsurprisingly, digital newspaper readership continues to increase year-over-year: the 2019 report found that 83 per cent of newspaper readers are accessing at least some of their newspaper content online.

Interestingly, however, the majority of these readers are using that digital content to supplement— not replace — readership of a print edition of the newspaper. In total, 52 per cent of newspaper readers access newspaper content from both print and online sources.

“This year’s research clearly demonstrates that both print and digital newspaper sources play a unique and distinct role in the lives of Canadians,” said Claude Heimann, president of Totum Research.

“For example, it’s clear that people like to start their day with the comprehensive and in-depth reporting of a print newspaper, and then stay up to date on breaking news on digital as the day progresses.”

The report confirms that most print reading happens early in the day, while digital reading is more consistent from morning to night.

Finally, the research specifically looked at the newspaper reading habits of younger Canadians. While millennials have been blamed for the death of everything from mayonnaise to department stores, newspapers appear to have avoided that curse: 88 per cent of millennials read newspapers weekly, accessing newspaper content primarily through their mobile phones.

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