The Media Barometer: First Results 2018

The Swedish Media Barometer is an annual survey that analyses daily media use on different platforms among the Swedish population. Here are the first results from the 2018 survey.
The Media Barometer
 | 27 March 2019

The digital shift

Traditional media platforms such as FM radio, traditional TV, and paper magazines continue to lose listeners, viewers and readers, while the media’s streaming and digital versions are increasing. It is only in terms of television that overall use remains stable despite the platform shift, with the increased number of viewers of online TV compensating for the decrease in those of traditional TV.

Online TV consumption is growing

Ten years ago, about 85 per cent of Swedes watched TV on a regular day. In 2018, the proportion of TV viewers is 82 per cent. At the same time, traditional TV has a falling curve. Five years ago the proportion who watched traditional TV on an average day was about 80 per cent, while the Media Barometer 2018 shows that the proportion of viewers of traditional TV decreased from 64 per cent in 2017 to 57 per cent in 2018. Instead, Swedes watch television through streaming services on the Internet. Five years ago about 10 per cent of the population watched online TV on an average day, while in 2018 the proportion of online viewers is 36 per cent. 

Fewer read newspapers

The trend we have seen for many years continues. Ten years ago, 80 per cent of Swedes read at least one daily newspaper on a normal day. In 2018, 55 per cent read a daily newspaper on a regular day, regardless of platform. 

 Print newspapers are losing readers, while more people read newspapers digitally. In 2018 the proportion of readers of a daily newspaper on paper is 38 per cent, and the proportion of readers of a digital daily newspaper is 29 per cent. 

Online radio is increasing

Radio listening in Sweden was at its highest during the second half of the 1990s when 80 per cent of the population listened to radio on an average day. In 2018, the total share of listeners is 61 per cent. Most people listen to traditional radio, while the proportion of listeners of online radio, directly or as downloaded podcasts, has increased in recent years. In 2018, the share of this latter group is 18 per cent. Listening to streaming radio is highly related to age and is highest among 25- to 44-year-olds, at 28 per cent.

Social media

Ten years ago, every fourth Swede used social media on an average day. The largest proportion of users, 64 per cent, was made up of those aged 15 to 24 years. In 2018, over 70 per cent use social media on a regular day. The use of social media is still heavily age-related: among young people aged 15 to 24, the proportion is 95 per cent on an average day.

The main publication

The Media Barometer's main publication will be presented on May 24, and will contain comparisons of how media use has changed in different groups since 1979.

About the Media Barometer

The survey was started in 1979 by SR/PUB in cooperation with the Newspaper Research Programme based at Gothenburg University. In 1994, the responsibility for the Media Barometer was taken over by Nordicom. The survey is based on telephone interviews with a random sample of the population aged 9-79 years. The Media Barometer asks people if they used a specific medium yesterday, and then ask them to estimate the length of time they used it. Based on the results, media use among the population during an average day is measured. The Media Barometer also consists of follow-up questions about the possession and availability of different media/media technologies. 

Karin Hellingwerf

Topic :