Informing The Public

  • May 20, 2019

Editor’s Recommendation

News: Teens and Their Cellphones: How Much is Too Much?

by Demetra Aposporos

February 4, 2019

Whether on cellphones or computers, the most prolific Twitter users among U.S. adults are likely to be women.

Who uses Twitter?

The Pew Research Center released a report in April that found that the 22 percent of American adults who use Twitter are representative of the broader population in certain ways, but not others. Twitter users are younger, more likely to identify as Democrats, more highly educated, and have higher incomes than U.S. adults overall. Twitter users differ from the broader population on some key social issues; they are somewhat more likely to say that immigrants strengthen rather than weaken the country and see evidence of racial and gender-based inequalities in society. On other subjects, the views of Twitter users are not dramatically different from those expressed by all U.S. adults. Individuals who are among the top 10 percent most active tweeters also differ from those who tweet rarely. Compared with other U.S. adults on Twitter, they are much more likely to be women and more likely to say they regularly tweet about politics.

Teens in America today 

In February, the Pew Research Center published a report that looks at the experiences of U.S. teens today, finding that 7 in 10 teens see anxiety and depression as major problems among their peers, whether they personally suffer from these conditions or not. Concern about mental health cuts across gender, racial, and socioeconomic lines, with roughly equal shares of teens across demographic groups saying it is a significant issue in their community. Fewer teens, though still substantial shares, voice concern over bullying, drug addiction, and alcohol consumption. More than 4 in 10 say these are major problems affecting people their age in the area where they live.

How Americans receive local news  

The Pew Research Center released a study in March, with support from the Google News Initiative, examining the local news landscape across the U.S. Based on a survey of roughly 35,000 U.S. adults, the study found that nearly as many Americans today prefer to get their local news online as through a television set. The 41 percent of Americans who say they prefer getting their local news via TV and the 37 percent who prefer it online far outpace those who prefer a printed newspaper or the radio (13 percent and 8 percent, respectively). The vast majority of Americans who get news from local TV stations primarily do so from the television set (76 percent), not from the stations’ websites or social media accounts (22 percent). Radio is similarly tied to its traditional form. But 43 percent of daily newspaper consumers tend to get that news digitally, as do 49 percent of those who rely on community newsletters
or listservs.

Groups experiencing discrimination

The Pew Research Center published a report in April finding that the public sees widespread discrimination against several racial, ethnic, and religious groups in the U.S. While there has been little change in most of these views over the past several years, the share of Americans saying Jews face discrimination in the U.S. has increased substantially since late 2016. Today, 64 percent of Americans say Jews face at least some discrimination, a 20 percentage-point increase from 2016; the share saying Jews face “a lot” of discrimination has nearly doubled, from 13 percent to 24 percent. Democrats remain more likely than Republicans to say there is discrimination against Jews, but the shift in these views is evident in both parties. The survey also finds majorities of Americans continue to say there is a lot or some discrimination against blacks, Hispanics, gays and lesbians, women, and particularly Muslims; 82 percent say Muslims face some discrimination, with 56 percent saying Muslims encounter a lot of discrimination—the highest among nine groups included in the survey.