News consumption of hard and soft topics in Spain: Sources, formats and access routes

María Pilar Martínez-Costa 1 , Cristina Sánchez-Blanco 2  and Javier Serrano-Puche 3
  • 1 Faculty of Communication, Universidad de Navarra, Pamplona, Spain
  • 2 Faculty of Communication, Universidad de Navarra, Pamplona, Spain
  • 3 Faculty of Communication, Universidad de Navarra, Pamplona, Spain
María Pilar Martínez-Costa, Cristina Sánchez-Blanco and Javier Serrano-Puche


The variety of devices and the socialization of consumption have decentralized access to online information which is not retrieved directly from media websites but through social networks. These same factors have driven user interest towards a wider range of both ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ topics. The aim of this article is to identify the consumption of news on these topics among digital users in Spain. The methodology used is based on an analysis of the survey conducted as part of the Digital News Report 2017. Following this analysis, a conclusion has been reached that the most popular hard news stories in Spain are those related to the local and regional community itself, and to health and education, while the most popular soft news stories relate to lifestyles and arts and culture. The analysis has revealed that increased interest in news and greater topic specialization result in more diversified use of sources, formats, and complementary routes.

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The European Journal of Communication Research is an established forum for scholarship and academic debate in the field of communication science and research from a European perspective. Communications highlights the concerns of communication science through the publication of articles, research reports, review essays and book reviews on theoretical and methodological developments considered from a European perspective.