An overwhelming majority of U.S. born Latinos (79%) said they'd rather get their news in English. McGowan

First and second generation Latinos in the U.S. can be quite different culturally depending on their levels of assimilation to the country. Their understanding of English is an large factor, and a new survey by the Pew Research Center illustrates this with a key component of their lives: news consumption.

The study asked immigrants and U.S. born Latinos how they like to get their news and got contrasting answers. almost half of all immigrants (47%) answered they'd rather get them in Spanish, while 22% chose English and the remaining 31% didn't mention a specific preference.

In contrast, an overwhelming majority of U.S. born Latinos (79%) said they'd rather get their news in English, compared to only 3% who chose Spanish. The remaining 17% said they had no preference. Overall, just over half of all Latino adults (51%) said they prefer to get their news in English, compared to 24% in Spanish and 23% who don't have a preference.

Pew Latino News
How first and second generation Latinos get their news Pew Research Center

Asked how they mostly get their news, rather than their preference, the answers were quite similar, although a small proportion of immigrant Latinos seem to get their news in English even though they'd rather consume them in Spanish. 26% of immigrants said they mostly get their news in English, four percentage points more than those who'd choose this option. Conversely, 41% of the members of this group get their news in Spanish, six percentage points less than in the previous answer. There is practically no difference in the answers of U.S. born Latinos regarding the way they'd prefer to get their news and how they do it.

The survey also sought to find how Latinos get their news. Almost two out of three (65%) said they get them using digital devices, an answer that includes social media (21%), news websites or apps (19%), search (18%) and podcasts (7%). The remaining answers were television (23%), radio (4%) and print (4%).

"Latinos are more likely than White Americans (55%) and Black Americans (50%) to prefer getting news from digital devices. Latinos also are more likely than White and Black adults to get news from social media, at least in part because Latino adults tend to be younger than other groups, and young adults are more inclined to use social media for news," the report added. Divided by age group, 73% of Latino adults under 50 prefer using digital devices, with 27% specifically choosing social media.

A salient data point is the fact that, overall, fewer Latinos are continuously following the news. In November 2023, 22% of adults from this demographic said they follow the news all or most of the time, while 36% said they do it some of the time. The current figure is nine percentage points lower than in August 2020, when 31% of Latino adults said they followed the news all or most of the time.

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Do Latinos in the U.S. stay connected to the news from their countries of origin? Pew Research Center

"In recent years, Hispanic Americans have followed the news less closely than Black and White Americans. Again, the high share of young adults within the Hispanic population plays a role, because young people are less likely to follow the news closely," the report said. Only 10% of Latinos aged 18 to 29 follow the news all or most of the time, compared to 44% of those aged 65 and older.

As for specific sources of news, half of respondents said that "at least sometimes get news from Hispanic news outlets – those that specifically cater to Hispanic audiences." "This includes 21% who say they do this extremely or very often. Just over half of Hispanics (54%) get news about their or their family's country of origin at least sometimes, including 24% who do this often."

Immigrants are much more likely to stay in touch with news from their countries of origin. 72% said this is the case for them, while 38% of U.S. born Latinos said they get news about their family's country of origin.

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