Newspapers poll highest in Scotland as source of news

MORE people in Scotland rely on newspapers for their national and regional news than in the rest of the UK, according to a survey conducted by broadcasting regulators, Ofcom.

When asked what their main source of national and regional news was, 24 per cent of Scots cited newspapers, as against a UK average of 14 per cent.

Meanwhile, fewer Scots (59 per cent) cited TV news as their main source, than the UK average (68 per cent).

In its Communications Market Report for Scotland, Ofcom examined availability, take-up and usage of internet, telecommunications and broadcasting services – comparing its findings for Scotland with those in Wales, Northern Ireland and the nine English Regions.

So, for example, when it comes to making phone calls over the internet – so-called VoIP services – Scots lead the way in the UK, with 19 per cent of internet users in Scotland using the facility.

This is the second time Ofcom has undertaken such research in Scotland.

Last year’s report showed significant differences, particularly in take-up levels of broadband and digital television, both between the nations and also between those living in urban and rural areas. This year’s report shows those gaps are closing. Two years ago, there was a 12 per cent gap between the number of adults with broadband at home in Northern Ireland (lowest at 24 per cent), Wales (25 per cent), Scotland (31 per cent) and England (highest at 36 per cent).

But last year, the gap reduced to three per cent. Take-up in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland stood at 42 per cent and in England had reached 45 per cent.

Two years ago, the gap between the nations in terms of digital television take-up was even larger at 19 per cent (Wales at 72 per cent, England at 66 per cent, Scotland at 60 per cent and NI at 53 per cent).

By last year, this gap had reduced to 13 per cent (Wales at 82 per cent, Scotland at 76 per cent, England at 75 per cent, and NI at 69 per cent).