Reuters Institute releases Digital News Report 2021

Reuters Institute releases Digital News Report 2021

Some news organisations have benefited from the need for reliable news during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Reuters Institute’s latest Digital News Report.


The organisation’s 10th annual surveybased on more than 92,000 interviews representing the views of over half the world’s populationshows how COVID-19 is transforming the news industry. The findings also reveal what audiences think about impartiality, and explore the rise of more visual social networks like TikTok and Instagram.

Key findings include the fact that trust in news has grown, on average, by six points in the wake of the pandemic, with 44% saying they trust news most of the time. 

The survey covers 46 markets, including six new ones: India, Indonesia, Nigeria, Thailand, Colombia and Peru. Finland remains the country with the highest levels of overall trust (65%), with the United States having the lowest levels (29%).

Other key findings include:

  • Across 20 countries where publishers have been actively pushing digital subscriptions, 17% said they have paid for some kind of online news in the last year. 
  • More respondents said they had seen more misinformation about coronavirus than any other subject, including politics.
  • Across countries, 74% say they still prefer news that reflects a range of views and lets them decide what to think.

Lead author and Senior Research Associate Nic Newman said: “The focus on factual reporting during the COVID-19 crisis may have made the news seem more straightforward, while the story has also had the effectof squeezing out more partisan political news. 

“This may be a temporary effect, but in almost all countries we see audiences placing a greaterpremium on accurate and reliable news sources”

The Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism is dedicated to exploring the future of  journalism worldwide.

In the coming weeks, the Institute will explore what the results mean for different news markets through a series of online launch events focusing on Africa, Asia-Pacific, Europe, India, Latin America and the USA. Each event will feature an overview of the key findings and an expert panel discussion with journalists from these regions.

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