Ipsos Reid

Ipsos Reid

July 08, 2005 10:00 ET

Blogs and the Influence on News and the Media

Attention: Assignment Editor, Lifestyle Editor, Media Editor, News Editor, Tech/Telecomm Editor TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - July 8, 2005) - Many online Canadians believe blogs influence public opinion (41%), media (33%), and politics (29%) -- Among blog readers, majority believe blogs influence public opinion (58%), Four in ten believe they influence mainstream media (45%), and politics and public policy (41%).

As debate continues about the effect that blogs and bloggers are having on politics, media and public opinion in Canada, a recent survey conducted by Ipsos-Reid and sponsored by PR Direct, a division of The Canadian Press, reveals that four-in-ten online Canadians (42%) have read a blog at least once.

Among those who have read blogs:
A majority (58%) believe blogs influence public opinion, and four-in-ten believe they influence mainstream media (45%), and politics and public policy (41%); Four-in- ten (37%) would describe their content as "accurate"; and
half (52%) say that they "trust" the content of these websites either somewhat (49%) or very much (3%).

Blogs were defined to respondents as web pages with minimal to no external editing, providing online commentary that are periodically updated and presented in reverse chronological order, with hyperlinks to other online sources. They were further told that blogs could function as personal diaries, technical advice columns, sports chat, celebrity gossip, political commentary, or all of the above.

These are the findings of an Ipsos-Reid poll conducted from June 2nd to June 12th, 2005 via a representative online Canadian sample of 3,378 Canadian adults. For the total sample of 3,378 results are accurate 95% of the time with a +/-1.7 margin of error. For the sample of 1,355 blog readers, results are accurate 95% of the time with a margin of error of +/-2.7% of what it would have been had this entire population been surveyed.

Four-in-ten online Canadians (42%) have read a blog -- particularly high among men (48%), those aged 18-34 (50%), and those with post secondary education (45%).

Four-in-ten online Canadians (42%) admit to having read a blog, with the remainder (58%) saying they have not.
Blog use seems to be most popular among those:

With high household incomes of $60,000 or more (44%);

Men (48% vs. 35% among women);

Younger adults aged 18-34 (50%); and

Those with post secondary education (45%).

One-quarter of online Canadians (25%) believe blogs are accurate news sources - but, of those who have read blogs, 37% believe they are an accurate news source.

Among all online Canadians, one-in-four (25% -- 2% very/23% somewhat) would describe their content as accurate. Thirty-eight percent would describe them as "not accurate", a further 37% "don't know".

Four-in-ten (37%) of those who have read a blog at least once describe their content as "accurate" (4% very/34% somewhat), 51% believe they are "not accurate", and 12% "don't know".

And of those who have read a blog, half (52%) say they trust the content.

Among those who have read a blog, 52% say that they trust the content in terms of these websites either somewhat (49%) or very much (3%). One-third (34%) say the do not trust the content at all, and 14% "don't know".

Of online Canadians, 34% say they trust the content on blogs (32% somewhat/2% very much), 26% don't trust them at all, and 41% "don't know".

Among all online Canadians, many believe blogs influence public opinion (41%), media (33%), and politics (29%).
Online Canadians are most likely to say that blogs are influential when it comes to public opinion (41%, 9% "very influential"), followed by mainstream media (33%, 5% very influential"), and politics and public policy (29%, 5% "very influential").

Among blog readers, a majority (58%) believe blogs influence public opinion - four-in-ten believe they influence mainstream media (45%), and politics and public policy (41%).

Among blog readers, a majority (58%) think blogs are influential on public opinion (14% "very influential) - four-in-ten believe they influence mainstream media (45%, 7% "very influential"), and politics and public policy (41%, 7% very influential).

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/For further information: For full tabular results, please visit our website at www.ipsos.ca.
News Releases are available at: www.ipsos-na.com/news/ and www.prdirect.ca

/ IN: MEDIA, POLITICS, TECHNOLOGY

Contact Information

  • John Wright, Senior Vice-President, Ipsos-Reid
    Primary Phone: 416-324-2900