Peruse the comment sections of any news outlet’s social media page or website and you’re guaranteed to find a plethora of netizens criticizing how they covered a particular story.
But if you’ve read said story yourself, you may notice that many of these responses tend to only focus on what’s said in the headline and not much else. It can be explained pretty simply — many Americans don’t read news stories in-depth; in fact, some don’t even read past the headline at all, despite often sharing their opinions of the piece.
A 2014 study by the Media Insight Project, an initiative of the AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research and the American Press Institute, found that four in 10 Americans “report that they delved deeper into a particular news subject beyond the headlines in the last week.”
The study adds that a mere 49 percent of adults “said they delved deeper to learn more about the last breaking news story they paid attention to.”
It isn’t surprising that 60 percent of respondents admitted to reading nothing more than headlines. Take this article from the Hollywood Reporter, for example.
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