Read All About It? Unlikely takes

“If I start reading international news, it’ll mean the terrorists have won.” OK, perhaps no one has explicitly said this since Sept. 11. But it would be a plausible summation of Americans’ indifference to foreign news. A study by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press finds an uptick in the number of people closely following overseas news. However, nearly all of this increase has come “among a narrow, highly educated segment of the public.” To the extent people follow news of any sort, it’s most likely to be of the local ilk (see the chart). Despite post-Sept. 11 speculation that young adults would shed their aversion to news, people under 35 “continue to register lower levels of news consumption than did previous generations” at the same age. In all, the amount of time Americans spend reading the paper each day has fallen to 15 minutes, vs. 19 minutes in 1994. Time spent on TV news is down to 28 minutes (vs. 38 minutes). Twenty percent of adults got no news at all from newspapers, TV or radio on the day before being polled (vs. 10 percent in 1994). Is this because the Internet is displacing older media? Not really. Of those who do go online daily for news, just 16 percent said they use other media less than before.