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Published: Tuesday February 23, 2010 MYT 9:08:00 PM

Singaporean mainstream media ‘a trusted news source’

SINGAPORE: The readership of Singapore’s newspapers remained strong despite the multitude of news sources on the Internet.

Acting Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts Lui Tuck Yew said there were many reasons why this was so, and one was that the mainstream media in Singapore had continued to remain a trusted news source.

“The mainstream media is accurate, timely and balanced in its reporting,” he said in a written reply to questions raised in the ongoing Parliament sitting.

The minister quoted a media survey conducted by Nielsen between July 2008 and June 2009, that 75% of those surveyed, selected newspapers as their preferred source of news.

Another recent survey conducted by the US-based public relations firm, Edelman, also revealed that 68% of the respondents in Singapore found newspapers to be the most trusted source of information.

Lui said this was significantly higher than the international average of only 34% which trusted newspapers as a credible source of information.

Saying the readership of Singapore local dailies, both offline and online, was healthy, the minister said readership of the newspapers had gone up by 5% between 2008 and 2009, while that for online versions had increased by 45% during the same period.

He also said that with the fast-changing media landscape and the more recent economic crisis, Singapore’s mainstream media companies were quick to adapt to the situation.

As commercially-driven companies, they had to be innovative and exploit new business opportunities to remain viable, he added.

Lui said the Singapore Press Holdings was quick to launch online versions of The Straits Times, Business Times and Lianhe Zaobao, while MediaCorp also had an online version of TODAY newspaper.

The minister also said with more Singaporeans, particularly those in the younger age groups, turning to multiple sources for information, it was important for the government to take a holistic approach and leverage on both the mainstream media and online media to reach out to them. -- Bernama

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