According to a report prepared by Attention Marketing
Research (combination of know-how and
experience of market researchers from PMR Consulting & Research and
consultants of Attention Marketing) websites are the source of knowledge about
current events in Poland and abroad for over a half of Poles. One in five
respondents obtains information from social media and daily newspapers, while
8% – from blogs and vlogs. More than a half of Poles get information from
television but public TV channels have very low levels of trust. Approximately
28% of Poles also use information about current developments provided by the
radio and only 14% – by opinion magazines.

Different Way of Consuming Information

are sources of knowledge about current developments in Poland and in the world
for 54% of the respondents. For 21% of them these are social media, for 8% –
blogs and vlogs. This is also the reason why 22% of the respondents browse
daily newspapers.

“In terms of popularity websites only slightly give in
to television, and social media – to newspapers. This is a vast change of how
information is consumed,”
says Adam Sanocki, managing partner in Attention
Marketing consulting company. “Traditional
media are currently under an extraordinary pressure. On the one hand, they
compete with their credibility and solidity of journalism, on the other, they
compete against time to be the fastest source of news. Frequently, it is
difficult to combine these two approaches and this peculiar schizophrenia is
reflected in the quality of materials the media present. And if you put
political pressures on the top of that, the disaster is inevitable. The target audiences
are torn between the lack of trust in the media and the awareness that the
Internet is full of both truth and lies, which usually never verified,” ­
up Adam Sanocki.

First and foremost, we have a big shift,
which is still intensifying, in how we use mass media. Young people less and
less frequently focus their attention on traditional media – the material ones.
They rather consume content on their computers and mobile devices. The older
ones are still accustomed to their television sets, daily newspapers or weekly
magazines and they are less prone to go online or turn mobile,”
says Błażej
Dawid, market researcher from PMR Consulting & Research. “If modern technologies push out the old
ones, the consumption behaviours will also change. Now, a few minutes after an
event, information about it goes around the world and lands instantly in our
phones, on social media walls or news websites, and the consumers no longer
need to wait until the evening news program or for the morning paper. They get
them at work, when commuting or during their lunch.”

to Attention Marketing experts, as the information system is atomised and
decentralised, people are susceptible to living in so-called filter bubbles, to
manipulation or even informational exclusion.

„Social media want to encourage us to spend more time
with them. This is why they care about the feelings of their users. Thus,
social media frequently surround the users with information that confirm their
views and go along with their interests. This forms a filter bubble – our
micro-social media world – which we build with every single mouse-click
explains Adam Sanocki. “We are presented postings of friends the user has conversed with
before, information from the websites the user has visited and liked. As a
result, you may get an impression that the entire surrounding reality does
nothing but nodding in agreement. And the real world is often completely
different – it’s multi-dimensional and less obvious than your friends’ opinions
might suggest,”
concludes Adam Sanocki. “Our
survey shows that Poles still use websites directly, not via search engines or
social media. The 21% for whom social media are the sources of news is less
than a half compared to American survey results (PEW) and this is fairly
positive considering the filter bubbles,”
adds Sanocki.

Just like in the real world, in social media
we surround ourselves with people who are like us and share our world views. On
the one hand, this is a natural behaviour stemming from the essence of social
bonds. However, on the other, it poses a threat of isolation and an incomplete picture
of a given phenomenon or fact,”
says Błażej Dawid. “Therefore, it is worth remembering to carefully approach the content on
social media and it’s best to verify the information using other sources. This
is how we will be more certain that our perception of the information is more

Television is Lying?

to 52% of Polish respondents, the Polish public TV is not trustworthy. Only 18%
stated they trust the public broadcaster. At the same time, this is the source
of everyday news for 52% of the respondents. Private televisions deliver
information about the world to 58% of Poles. 32% find them untrustworthy.

“Many viewers find it obvious whose interest is
pursued by the public television,”
says Dawid
Michnik, partner in Attention Marketing. “This
means that viewers, more or less consciously, know or sense that the message of
TV programs carries “something more” than just pure information content and it
is not always just the mission of politically neutral public media. Bias of
public televisions is a fairly frequent issue all over the world, and even the
BBC is accused of leaning towards one side or the other.

the public television seems to be at the crossroads. It is still a major
information source, regrettably, it is not a very trustworthy one. It is mostly
trusted by viewers of 55 and older (20%) and mostly distrusted by those between
35 and 54 years of age (as many as 57%).

TV looks better in this context. In the 55+ age group, non-public TV is trusted
by 39% of the respondents – nearly twice as many as in the same age group in
public TV. On the other hand, it is most distrusted by young people between 18
and 34 years of age – 42%. But it is still 10 per cent less than the same age
group in the case of public TV.

Still on a Roll

situation looks similar among radio broadcasters. 47% of the respondents
answered they do not trust the public radio, while 24% trusted it. At the same
time, 35% of the survey participants distrust non-public radio broadcasters,
while 30% trust them.

Private media compete among each other with
the quality of information, the speed and delivery channels. Observations show,
however, that these are non-public media – TV or radio – that, in addition to
their regular formats, most often use also dynamic social channels like Twitter,”
notices Maciej Sokołowski, partner in Attention Marketing. “In this race, the radio must not be
underestimated, as it every day reaches thousands of listeners, who – even
unconsciously – form up their views on the information they heard on the

radio is the source of information for 27% of the respondents, while public
broadcasters are listened to by 28% of them.

As regards trust, an important factor is the
social capital that in Poland for years has been very low, compared to most EU
states or the USA. The current political climate focuses on the exploitation of
the Polish people’s distrust of public institutions, authorities, mass media
and, finally, of one another. This contributes to a further decrease of the
social capital and, consequently, greater internal divisions,”
writes Błażej
Dawid. “Hence we observe such a clear-cut
polarization of using public and non-public media, which both have completely
different audiences.

Yes-Man Effect

For 14%
of Poles, opinion magazines are the sources of information about current
events, and 5% read how-to magazines for this purpose.

While with television, radio and websites,
individual media compete using the speed of news delivery, the opinion
magazines fight over ideas and interpretations. Very many readers are able to
specify ideological inclinations, and sometimes even specific political parties
supported or fought against by major opinion magazines,”
believes Dawid
Michnik, partner in Attention Marketing. “Thus,
we might speak of the freedom of individual press titles, but the freedom of
journalism is rather a theoretical concept. In reality, you either match the
ideological trend of your title or you change the employer. Except for a very
few exceptions, the magazines lack the pluralism of opinions. Thus, one can
hardly be surprised that the divisions between us are so strong as our mass
media authorities are so black and white.”

In the world and in Poland we are witnessing
the process of opinion magazines being converted into identity media, which,
instead of reliable information and diverse opinions, offer a set of clearly
formulated views. The growing number of information sources is making it more
and more difficult to win the reader and sharper messages attract the audience’s
attention. This is a shortcut and, regrettably, usually a dead end,”
up Adam Sanocki.