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Report: Instagram set to become a more popular news source than Twitter

Instagram is inching closer to overtaking Twitter as a preferred news source, according to a new report.

The 2020 Reuters Institute Digital News Report found Instagram especially has surged as a news source for young people between the ages 18-24. The use of the photo-sharing app for news has reportedly doubled since 2018. 

“Instagram’s become very popular with younger people,” lead author of the report, Nic Newman, told BBC News. “They really respond well to stories that are told simply and well with visual images.”

Instagram features like IGTV and Instagram stories could contribute to its surge as a source for news since these features are visually interactive. 

About 11% of people use Instagram for news, which is right behind Twitter’s 12%, according to the report’s findings. The report suggests that Instagram will surpass Twitter over the next year. 

Digital Trends reached out to Twitter and Instagram for comment. We will update this story when we hear back. 

Of course, Facebook still reigns supreme when it comes to social media news sources. The report shows that 36% of people use Facebook for their news. YouTube and WhatsApp come in second and third place, with 21% and 16% of users, respectively, using those social media platforms as a news source.

However, people still don’t fully trust social media as a go-to news source. According to the report, only 26% of people said they trusted getting their news from social media. In comparison, 59% of respondents trusted credible news organizations, especially when it came to coronavirus information. 

To combat misinformation and the spread of fake news, social media platforms have implemented fact-checking notices or alerts, prompts asking you to read an article before sharing it, and even fact-checking chatbots.

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