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Statistic of the Week: How Brazilian voters get their news

Brazilian elections, Digital News Report, 2018

Voting is compulsory for all Brazilians aged 18-70 in this weekend’s national and state elections. But where do Brazil’s voters get their news? According to the Digital News Report, 2018, two thirds (66%) of Brazilians who are online use social media for news.

The report – a survey of online news access across 37 countries - reveals that Brazilians are among the world’s highest users of social media for news. One third (33%) of young people aged 18-24 using social media as their primary news source.

Despite a recent decline in the number of Brazilians who use Facebook for news, 52% of the population find news on Facebook. WhatsApp (48%) and YouTube (34%) are also very popular news sources.

Many Brazilians report they are worried about what is real on the internet. Most (85%) – the highest proportion in the survey – report being “very, or extremely concerned” about what is real and what is ‘fake’ on the internet when it comes to news.

While trust in news overall (59%) is relatively high in Brazil (third highest of 37 countries in the survey), it is lower among left-wing individuals compared to centrist or right-wing respondents.

Commercial television is also a popular source of news in Brazil, with over half (56%) of those aged between 45 and 54 using it as their main source of news.

The Digital News Report survey reflects the estimated 66% of Brazil’s population with access to the internet, with respondents generally from urban areas and is not representative of the whole population.