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February 26, 2007 / Toby Dayton

General Social Survey: Few Read Daily Paper Every Day

For over 30 years, the General Social Survey is sent out to about 3,000 adults in the U.S. in order to asses trends, behaviors, and attitudes of Americans. With 450 questions, the survey covers a diverse set of issues, ranging from belief in the afterlife (steady at 72%) and trusting others (35% said that generally people can be trusted), to gun permits (80% favor a law requiring a police permit before being able to buy a gun) and legalization of marijuana (32% think it should be legal). Though it shouldn’t come as any surprise, the survey also indicated that fewer and fewer Americans are reading a daily newspaper every day. This year, only about 32% of respondents indicated that they read a newspaper every day, down from 40% in 2004, 50% in 1989, and 70% in 1972.

Time to read the daily this morning: 11 minutes and 43 seconds

Daily recommendation for the dailies: When you quote someone, make sure you get the quote correct. An article in yesterday’s paper on Film Independent’s Spirit Awards completely botched screenwriter & director Ali Selim’s acceptance speech for his film Sweet Land. Ali’s award for Best First Feature is much deserved, and given that he is a Minnesota native and the film depicts farming life in Minnesota in the twenties, it was nice to see the Star Tribune coverage on Sunday. Unfortunately, the story completely misquoted Ali’s acceptance speech. With the invention of Tivo, there is absolutely no reason to ever misquote someone’s words if they appear on television.

[tags]Newspaper Readership, Daily Newspapers, Marijuana, Legalizing Marijuana, Gun Permits, NRA, Crazy People Who Own Guns, General Social Survey, Belief in Afterlife, Crazy People Who Believe In An Afterlife[/tags]