NEWS9 June 2020

Covid-19 news consumption drops, Ofcom study finds

Covid-19 Media News UK

UK – Fewer people are repeatedly following news about Covid-19, according to Ofcom’s tenth weekly study on how the public are acting on news and information during the pandemic.

Online news reading phone_crop

The study, based on a survey of 2,000 people between 29th and 31st May, found that 7% of people were accessing news about Covid-19 20 times or more a day, compared with 24% in the first week of Ofcom’s research.

But nine in ten people were still accessing pandemic-related news at least once a day, according to the latest survey.

Reports of seeing misinformation in the past week about Covid-19 was at 38% in the latest survey, down to its lowest levels since the first was carried out between 27th and 29th March.

In comparison, 46% saw misinformation in the first week of the research, with the proportion of respondents reporting specifically seeing conspiracy theories about the 5G mobile network’s links to Covid-19 climbing to 50% by week three.

The latest study found 30% of respondents had seen claims about 5G in the past week.

The NHS remains the most trusted source of information, according to Ofcom’s survey, with 92% trusting the information the health service provides.

Ofcom’s latest research found the public considered “Staying at home as much as possible”, “Maintaining social distancing when outside” and “Washing hands regularly and thoroughly” the three most important pieces of official advice.