How do people in Germany keep themselves informed in the digital age - and what does actually stick with them? In a long-term project, the HBI, together with the dpa and other partners from the media, public institutions and civil society, is researching the news literacy of the population under the age of 30.
The following findings were presented at the Hamburger Mediendialog [Hamburg Media Dialogue] on Wednesday, 28 April 2021 and published afterwards:
Digital media environments have significantly changed the way society informs itself. On the one hand, they offer more and more opportunities to stimulate social discourse. On the other hand, however, an impoverishment of social communication can be observed, such as tendencies to avoid news content, the spread of fake news or a reluctance to pay for journalistic services.
This situation is problematic because a functioning democracy depends on well-informed citizens and on the free formation of individual opinions. Thus, the dpa and the Hamburg Ministry of Culture and Media have initiated this project. Together with partners from the media, science, public institutions and civil society, the project aims to research and promote the news literacy of the population under 30.
The objectives are as follows,
- to gain sound knowledge of the news usage, levels of information and news literacy of the population
- establish a broad dialogue on ways to promote news literacy and news interest, involving policy makers, media companies, educational institutions and civil society; and
- develop a wide range of measures to promote news literacy.
The Leibniz Institute for Media Research conducts a study with qualitative and quantitative components in order to provide sound knowledge. The focus lies on the interaction between news interest, news usage, information and opinion formation.
The central questions of the study are
- Does it make a difference where and how people inform themselves?
- What is the situation regarding news literacy in the digital media environment?
Based on the findings of the study "Use the News - News Usage and News Literacy in the Digital Age", the participants want to develop and test new news formats in a specially founded media laboratory.