Who really influences Britain? The Sun or Twitter?

Posted on 11/11/2009


For those of us with a statto-like obsession with the UK media, some very interesting figures have been released by pollsters YouGovStone.

Ostensibly undertaken to find out who is more influential, Google or Murdoch, the raw data paints an interesting picture of UK media consumption and influence:

– 91% of the general public watch BBC channels and while 67% watch ITV, Channel 4 is right behind on 66%. 17% watch Sky channels.

– More people use Twitter (7%) than read the Sunday Telegraph (5%) or use Myspace (3%).

– The effectiveness of websites on the overall impact of a print media outlet is pronounced and proven with over 1,000% more UK adults saying they read the Guardian’s paper/website (10% or 4.7m people) compared to its reported circulation figures (around the 350,000 mark).

– And while papers like the Times, Mail and Sun are still thought to be very or fairly influential by the public (67, 64 and 54% of UK adults agreeing), more so than some individual social networks: Google (62%), Facebook (47%), YouTube (39%), Twitter (33%), Myspace (18%), and Blogger.com (5%), print media needs to watch out, because when added together…

– 17% of UK adults believe online media has the most influence in Britain today, compared to 10% who think the same of print media and 67% who feel that way about broacast media.

And while there are some limitations to the survey (which I’m happy to go into if you Twitter me!), it shows some interesting trends.

But is however, all very worrying when 3% of the population believe the BBC is owned by Murdoch! Perhaps the BBC coverage of the Sun switching sides or attacking Brown is having an effect and Mandleson was right about it damaging the BBC’s impartiality!?

Sources: Daily and Sunday Newspaper data from ABC via the Guardian and population data from ONS.