The Proliferation of the “News Finds Me” Perception Across Societies

Homero Gil de Zúñiga, Nadine Strauss, Brigitte Huber


Today, people are exposed to vast information flows while online or on social media. This abundance has led some people to believe that they no longer have to actively seek the news to be well informed about public affairs and that important news will find them through social media or other online channels. Recently, academics have offered a first theoretical account, capturing this belief as the “news finds me” perception (NFM). Initial studies have been conducted in the U.S. and Austria, indicating deleterious effects between NFM and both traditional news use and political predispositions and behaviors. This study seeks to expand this line of research, exploring the proliferation of NFM in 10 societies around the world. Findings give further insights into the degree of NFM proliferation in diverse contexts. Across societies, NFM is associated with age, social media news use, and other meaningful democratic variables such as political interest, political knowledge, and voting behavior.


news finds me perception, social media news use, political interest, political knowledge, voting, comparative research

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