Television loses ground as the top source of political news.
A plurality of Californians (38%) get most of their political news from television. Our findings were similar in 2010 (37%), but in 2007 this number was 9 points higher, at 47 percent. Over the same time period, reliance on the Internet for political news has increased 15 points (17% 2007, 24% 2010, 32% today). There has been a slight drop in reliance on newspapers (15% 2007 and 2010, 10% today) and radio news (12% 2007, 10% 2010, 9% today).

More than half of those who rely on TV watch cable news.
Among those who watch television news, a little less than half (48%) report watching mostly cable stations (53% 2010, 43% 2007). Across all parties, regions, and demographic groups, pluralities report watching mostly cable news. By contrast, viewership of network television has remained steady (25% 2007, 23% 2010, 21% today). Twenty-seven percent of Californians report watching local television news (29% 2007, 22% 2010, 27% today).

FigureTable_NewsSources1The Internet continues to gain on TV as a primary news source.
Relying primarily on the Internet to find out what’s going on in politics has increased from 6% in 2000, to 17% in 2007, to 24% in 2010, to 32% today. The Internet has overtaken television as a news source for several groups, including younger adults (51% Internet, 28% television), upper-income residents (42% Internet, 20% television), independents (35% Internet, 28% television), and college graduates (42% Internet, 19% television).

Fewer Californians go online to read newspapers…
As the top information source, newspapers have declined since 2000 (31% 2000, 15% 2007, 15% 2010, 10% today). And only a third (29%) of those who look for news online say that they mostly access newspaper websites—a strong majority (67%) visit other types of websites. In 2010, 47% of those who mostly got their news online went to newspaper sites, while 50% went to other sites.

… and readership of print newspapers continues to decline.
Among those who report getting most of their information about politics from the newspaper, online readership is growing (13% 2007, 24% 2010, 34% today). Readership of print papers is on the decline (87% 2007, 73% 2010, 66% today).

Figures_NewsSources2Half of Californians go online for news about state politics and elections.
Half of Californians report going online for coverage of California politics and elections either often (18%) or sometimes (34%). Going online to get news about state politics has declined slightly since 2010 (22% often, 37% sometimes). Younger Californians (57% age 18 to 34, 53% age 35 to 54) are more likely than older residents (42% age 55 and older) to go online for state political news at least sometimes. Online consumption of news about California politics rises sharply as education and income levels increase.