A girl reads the news on a smartphone.

A girl reads the news on a smartphone.

Americans spend more time than ever with media compared to 30 or 40 years ago, but collectively we are paying considerably less attention to news. The reasons for this are not clear. Sources have diversified, giving us many new ways to get news; some say the caliber of news being offered has dropped. But it also seems possible that people just aren’t as interested and don’t feel the same civic obligation to stay informed. We talk about trends in news consumption, and what the apparent drop means for an informed and engaged public.


  • Thomas Patterson Bradlee professor of Government and the Press at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government author of "Informing the News: The Need for Knowledge-Based Journalism"
  • Jesse Holcomb Senior researcher, Pew Research Center
  • W. Joseph Campbell Professor, School of Communication, American University author of six books, most recent "1995:The Year the Future Began"

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