Never miss a story

Get subscribed to our newsletter


×
In the case of traditional media such as television and newspapers, people often only see the news if they deliberately choose to do so, but this doesnt apply on social media. Pixabay

Turning conventional wisdom on its head, researchers have found that use of social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, or search engine Google actually results in more visits to news sites and a greater variety of news sites visited.

This runs counter to what has been postulated to date as it is often assumed that the use of social networks and search engines has had a negative impact on the diversity of news that people access.


This is often attributed to the algorithmic filtering used by these intermediaries, which only displays information that corresponds to the individual users’ interests and preferences.

The new study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, contradicts this widespread conjecture.

“Anyone visiting Facebook or Google is much more likely to come into contact with news items. Therefore the use of these intermediaries is an important mechanism in the consumption of news on the Internet,” said Frank Mangold of the University of Hohenheim in Germany.

The research team attributes this to the concept of incidental exposure to news.

In the case of traditional media such as television and newspapers, people often only see the news if they deliberately choose to do so.

On intermediary platforms they can also come into contact with news by chance, if, for example, their contacts share news content with them or they come across interesting articles when checking their emails.

According to the researchers, the study’s findings could have significant political and social implications, as they disprove the notion of the formation of filter bubbles and echo chambers.

“Previous debates have, in many respects, revolved around the fear that online media would lead to new social barriers,” said Professor Michael Scharkow of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in Germany. “However, our findings show that social media and search engines in fact have great potential to break down existing barriers,” Scharkow said.

For their study, the researchers used a statistical model to calculate the estimated daily usage of news content in order to isolate the extent of incidental or unplanned contact with news items. The analysis is based on the web browsing behaviour of more than 5,000 German Internet users.


Turning conventional wisdom on its head, researchers have found that use of social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, or search engine Google actually results in more visits to news sites and a greater variety of news sites visited. Pixabay

“Regardless of whether a user usually consumed a little or a lot of online news, on days on which someone spent more time on Facebook, Twitter, or Google than usual, they also came into contact with more news as well as more news from different sources than usual,” stated Sebastian Stier from GESIS – the Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences in Cologne, Germany.

ALSO READ: Smartphone Gaint Xiaomi To Officially Unveil Mi 10 Series in Barcelona

“From previous studies undertaken by the University of Oxford in particular, we know that although access to news often happens partly by chance, it is also partly down to conscious choice. Some users even visit sites like Facebook and Twitter in order to consume news content,” added Johannes Breuer of GESIS. (IANS)


Popular

Wikimedia Commons

Amitabh Bachchan, during his speech to the crowd of over 80,000 people at the Reliance Industries' annual event, said that the legacy left by Dhirubhai has had a positive impact on millions of people's lives worldwide.

Amitabh Bachchan is adored by the public for his unforgettable on-screen performances as well as his magnetic demeanour. Not only do fans love Amitabh Bachchan's outstanding performance, but the actor's heartwarming words are also highly regarded. A much moved Amitabh Bachchan, during his speech to the crowd of over 80,000 people at the Reliance Industries' annual event, said that the legacy left by Dhirubhai has had a positive impact on millions of people's lives worldwide.

When Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan became bankrupt in the late 1990s, Dhirubhai Ambani stepped forward to give him financial assistance. In his speech, Bachchan remembered that Dhirubhai had sent Anil Ambani to offer him financial assistance during the crisis, which he had respectfully declined. Lenders began knocking on his door, losses mounted, and his bank account dwindled to nothing. He said, "Dhirubhai's money might have gotten me out of the problem quickly. However, I respectfully declined his offer and gradually began to find work again, which let me pay off my debt."

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Xavier Mouton Photographie on Unsplash

Irrespective of the age of your child, it is vital for parents to offer that extra support and assistance following an unsettling event.

In comparison to adults, children are prone to getting traumatized by troubling events easily, and this makes it important for parents to help their children when the times are tough. It could be a brutal accident, an unprecedented pandemic, a violent crime, or other disasters but with the right parental support, children have a higher chance of coming out stronger from an awful situation.

Anuja Kapur, Psychologist shares few tips wherein you can assist your child when tough times comes calling:

Every child responds differently to disturbing events:
What children feel about a current disaster in their life and how they react to it can come and go in waves. Children can act moody and withdrawn at times, struck with sorrow and fear at other times. There's no absolute "right" or "wrong" way to feel after a traumatic event so make sure not to dictate what your child or how your child should feel and react to the event.

a boy crying tears for his loss Children can act moody and withdrawn at times, struck with sorrow and fear at other times. | Photo by Kat J on Unsplash

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Andreas Haslinger on Unsplash

European consumers will be able to use a single charger for all their portable electronics - an important step to increase convenience and reduce waste.

The European Commission, the executive arm of the European Union (EU), has announced plans for smartphone and other electronics manufacturers to fit a common USB-C charging port on their devices in an effort to reduce waste. In addition to phones, the rules will apply to other devices like tablets, headphones, portable speakers, videogame consoles, and cameras, reports The Verge. The decision will have a huge impact on Apple, as the company still uses its own Lightning connector to charge iPhones. The proposals only cover devices using wired, not wireless and a USB-C port is only mandatory for devices that charge using a cable.

Different charging cables "Chargers power all our most essential electronic devices | Photo by Solen Feyissa on Unsplash

Keep reading... Show less