"A key theme in these survey findings is that many people see acquiring information as a highly social process in which trusted helpers matter,” Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Research Center’s Internet Project and a main author of the report said. “One of the main resources that people tap when they have questions is the networks of expertise. Even some of the most self-sufficient information consumers in our sample find that libraries and librarians can be part of their networks when they have problems to solve or decisions to make."

PBS Newshour: Turns out the most engaged library users also biggest tech users

We have a new report out today, a typology of Americans’ engagement with public libraries. It caps off the past three years of research the Pew Research Center has produced on the topic of public libraries’ changing role in Americans’ lives and communities.

Some of the main findings:

  • Americans’ library habits do not exist in a vacuum: People’s connection—or lack of connection—with public libraries is part of their broader information and social landscape. As a rule, people who have extensive economic, social, technological, and cultural resources are also more likely to use and value libraries as part of those networks. 
  • Life stage and special circumstances are linked to increased library use and higher engagement with information: Deeper connections with public libraries are often associated with key life moments such as having a child, seeking a job, being a student, and going through a situation in which research and data can help inform a decision.
  • Technology users are generally library users: A common narrative is that Americans are turning away from libraries because of newer technology, but the data shows that most highly-engaged library users are also big technology users. 

Check out the full report on our website! And if you’re curious about the basic data, this earlier report summarizes the measures we used to explore Americans’ engagement with public libraries.

New Report: Anonymity, Privacy, and Security Online
We have a new report out today on how internet users navigate anonymity, privacy, and security online.
One of the big findings in the report is that young adults ages 18-29 are more likely than their elders to take steps to be hidden online, as this chart shows. Other findings:
21% of internet users have had an email or social networking account compromised or taken over by someone else without permission.
12% have been stalked or harassed online.
11% have had important personal information stolen such as their Social Security Number, credit card, or bank account information.
6% have been the victim of an online scam and lost money.
6% have had their reputation damaged because of something that happened online.
4% have been led into physical danger because of something that happened online.
Read more…

New Report: Anonymity, Privacy, and Security Online

We have a new report out today on how internet users navigate anonymity, privacy, and security online.

One of the big findings in the report is that young adults ages 18-29 are more likely than their elders to take steps to be hidden online, as this chart shows. Other findings:

  • 21% of internet users have had an email or social networking account compromised or taken over by someone else without permission.
  • 12% have been stalked or harassed online.
  • 11% have had important personal information stolen such as their Social Security Number, credit card, or bank account information.
  • 6% have been the victim of an online scam and lost money.
  • 6% have had their reputation damaged because of something that happened online.
  • 4% have been led into physical danger because of something that happened online.

Read more

Digital Advertising and News: A new Pew Research Center Project for Excellence in Journalism study answers: Are news organizations transitioning their legacy advertisers to online platforms? Who advertises online? What types of ads are most common? And how much is news engaging in the targeted advertising many consider essential?

Digital Advertising and News: A new Pew Research Center Project for Excellence in Journalism study answers: Are news organizations transitioning their legacy advertisers to online platforms? Who advertises online? What types of ads are most common? And how much is news engaging in the targeted advertising many consider essential?

A great report out yesterday from the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press found that cable leads the pack as the campaign news source, and Facebook and Twitter play only modest roles. Fewer Americans are closely following news about the presidential campaign than four years ago.

Also of note: 68% say they prefer to get political news from sources that do not have a political point of view, compared with just 23% who prefer news from sources that share their point of view. (via)

"Mormons in America"
Via The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life
Many Mormons feel they are misunderstood, discriminated against and not accepted by other Americans as part of mainstream society. Yet, at the same time, a majority of Mormons think that acceptance of Mormonism is rising. 

"Mormons in America"

Via The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life

Many Mormons feel they are misunderstood, discriminated against and not accepted by other Americans as part of mainstream society. Yet, at the same time, a majority of Mormons think that acceptance of Mormonism is rising. 

Who are the Millennials?
They are America’s teens and twenty-somethings currently making the passage into adulthood — and they are confident, connected, and open to change, according to research from The Pew Research Center and its projects. 
Here’s a great infogrpahic illustrating this research.
For more on “Millennials: A Portrait of Generation Next,” see pewresearch.org/millenials and visit this page on our website.
And to find out how Millennial you are, take the quiz.

Who are the Millennials?

They are America’s teens and twenty-somethings currently making the passage into adulthood — and they are confident, connected, and open to change, according to research from The Pew Research Center and its projects. 

Here’s a great infogrpahic illustrating this research.

For more on “Millennials: A Portrait of Generation Next,” see pewresearch.org/millenials and visit this page on our website.

And to find out how Millennial you are, take the quiz.

New report: Why Americans use social media

Our latest report takes a quick but informative look at why Americans use social media:

Two-thirds of online adults (66%) use social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, MySpace or LinkedIn. These internet users say that connections with family members and friends (both new and old) are a primary consideration in their adoption of social media tools. Roughly two thirds of social media users say that staying in touch with current friends and family members is a major reason they use these sites, while half say that connecting with old friends they’ve lost touch with is a major reason behind their use of these technologies.

Other factors play a much smaller role—14% of users say that connecting around a shared hobby or interest is a major reason they use social media, and 9% say that making new friends is equally important. Reading comments by public figures and finding potential romantic partners are cited as major factors by just 5% and 3% of social media users, respectively.

Read more

nprfreshair:

The Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism looked at how mainstream media outlets use Twitter.

A new report from PEJ, based on analysis of more than 3,600 tweets over the course of a week, finds that news organizations use “Twitter primarily as an added means to disseminate their own material.” Read more in the full report at journalism.org.

nprfreshair:

The Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism looked at how mainstream media outlets use Twitter.

A new report from PEJ, based on analysis of more than 3,600 tweets over the course of a week, finds that news organizations use “Twitter primarily as an added means to disseminate their own material.” Read more in the full report at journalism.org.

"One of the most interesting things about this [digital] environment to me is that no one has yet come up with a playbook. Everybody’s trying to experiment in interesting ways; everybody’s trying to understand what the new media ecology looks like and how it can serve them. It’s a hard world to figure out."

—Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Internet Project, quoted in What do Americans want from their libraries? Here’s our chance to find out

For years researchers at the Pew Internet & American Life Project have been tracking changes in our information ecosystem. Now they’ll be looking at the habits and expectations of library users—and nonusers. [next libraries]

How to participate in our new study:

There are two ways to get involved in the Pew Internet Project’s research on American libraries.

  1. For the first phase of the study, which will begin in the next few months, Rainie will need to identify people who use ebook readers and tablets in libraries. Participants will be asked about their reading habits, how they use their ereaders with library materials, and what the experience is like for them. If you know of ebook-reading patrons who would be willing to participate, contact Rainie at lrainie [at] pewinternet [dot] org.
  2. For the second phase of the study, which will happen in mid- to late 2012, the Pew Internet Project will be surveying both librarians and community members about library services. Rainie wants to hear from a diverse set of librarians about services they’re now offering, services they’re contemplating, and services they may be seeing less demand for. If you’re a librarian who would like to participate, contact Rainie at lrainie [at] pewinternet [dot] org.

From our new report: Teens, kindness and cruelty on social network sitesPart 2: What teens experience and how they behave on social network sites 
The majority of teens have positive online experiences, but some are caught in an online feedback loop of meanness and negative experiences:
Most of the 77% of all teens who use social media say their experience is that people their age are mostly kind to one another on social network sites—overall, 69% say their experience is that peers are mostly kind to each other in social network spaces. Another 20% say their peers are mostly unkind, while 11% volunteered that “it depends.”
However, in a similar question asked of adults 18 and older, 85% of social media-using adults reported that their experience was that people are mostly kind to one another on social network sites, while just 5% reported that they see people behaving in mostly unkind ways.
When we asked them to describe how people act online, the results were pretty negative:

…but the teens who were asked about how they thought people should act online gave responses that were substantially more positive: 

Read more…

From our new report: Teens, kindness and cruelty on social network sites
Part 2: What teens experience and how they behave on social network sites 

The majority of teens have positive online experiences, but some are caught in an online feedback loop of meanness and negative experiences:

  • Most of the 77% of all teens who use social media say their experience is that people their age are mostly kind to one another on social network sites—overall, 69% say their experience is that peers are mostly kind to each other in social network spaces. Another 20% say their peers are mostly unkind, while 11% volunteered that “it depends.”
  • However, in a similar question asked of adults 18 and older, 85% of social media-using adults reported that their experience was that people are mostly kind to one another on social network sites, while just 5% reported that they see people behaving in mostly unkind ways.

When we asked them to describe how people act online, the results were pretty negative:

Word Cloud 1

…but the teens who were asked about how they thought people should act online gave responses that were substantially more positive: 

Word Cloud 2

Read more

From our new report: Teens, kindness and cruelty on social network sites - Teens and social network sites

We have a huge new report out today about how teens navigate interactions on social network sites and Twitter. It’s a big report, and covers a lot of ground—the above infographics are just from the first section, an overview of how many teens are on social media, who they are, and what they do there. More to follow…

What effect do tablets have on news consumption habits?

The Project for Excellence in Journalism (a fellow Pew Research project) and The Economist Group have collaborated on the most comprehensive and detailed analysis to date of tablet users and how they get news on their tablets: To what extent are people using their tablets for news rather than other activities? Are they getting more news now than before they had their tablets? 

The multi-phase study of nearly 1,200 tablet users and nearly 900 tablet news users offers unprecedented findings on many questions, and will be available on www.journalism.org on Tuesday, October 25.

How have mobile devices changed your news consumption habits?
In case you missed it: We recently came out with a great new report with the Project for Excellence in Journalism about how people get news and information about their local community. Some of the major findings include:
Local TV news remains the most popular source for local information in America, but adults rely on it primarily for just three subjects—weather, breaking news and to a lesser extent traffic.
Newspapers (both print and on the web) are the source Americans turn to most for a wider range of information than any other source.
The internet has a strong hold in the local community, as web-only outlets are now the key source of information on some key subjects such as education or local business and restaurants. Among adults under age 40, the internet rivals or surpasses other platforms on every single topic area except one (breaking local news). 
Want to learn more? You can explore for yourself the changing ecosystem of how people get local news with this interactive infographic, or read the report in full on our website.

In case you missed it: We recently came out with a great new report with the Project for Excellence in Journalism about how people get news and information about their local community. Some of the major findings include:

  • Local TV news remains the most popular source for local information in America, but adults rely on it primarily for just three subjects—weather, breaking news and to a lesser extent traffic.
  • Newspapers (both print and on the web) are the source Americans turn to most for a wider range of information than any other source.
  • The internet has a strong hold in the local community, as web-only outlets are now the key source of information on some key subjects such as education or local business and restaurants. Among adults under age 40, the internet rivals or surpasses other platforms on every single topic area except one (breaking local news). 

Want to learn more? You can explore for yourself the changing ecosystem of how people get local news with this interactive infographic, or read the report in full on our website.

The Digital Revolution and Higher Education

We’ve got a great new Pew Research Center report out today about college presidents and how they view the tech in the classroom—both today and in the coming years. This report cover everything from the perceptions of the public and college presidents about the value of online learning, the prevalence and future of online courses, use of digital textbooks, the internet and plagiarism, and technology use in the classroom, as well as college presidents’ own use of technology.

For instance: About half of college presidents (51%) say an online course provides an equal educational value to one taken in a classroom; just three-in-ten American adults (29%) agree. (Do you?)

More than three-quarters of college presidents (77%) report that their institutions now offer online courses, and college presidents predict substantial growth in online learning: 15% say most of their current undergraduate students have taken a class online, 50% predict that ten years from now most of their students will take classes online. 

Other findings include:

  • Most college presidents (55%) say that plagiarism in students’ papers has increased over the past 10 years. Among those who have seen an increase in plagiarism, 89% say computers and the internet have played a major role.
  • The leaders of the nation’s colleges and universities are a tech-savvy group. Nearly nine-in-ten (87%) use a smartphone daily, 83% use a desktop computer and 65% use a laptop.
  • College presidents are ahead of the curve on some of the newer digital technologies: Fully half (49%) use a tablet computer such as an iPad at least occasionally, and 42% use an e-reader such as a Kindle or Nook.
  • 15% of college presidents say most of their current undergraduate students have taken a class online, and 50% predict that 10 years from now most of their students will take classes online.
  • Nearly two-thirds of college presidents (62%) anticipate that 10 years from now, more than half of the textbooks used by their undergraduate students will be entirely digital.

The report is based on findings from two Pew Research Center surveys: a national poll of the general public, and a survey of college presidents done in association with The Chronicle of Higher Education. You and read or download the full report here: http://pewinternet.org/Reports/2011/College-presidents.aspx