Viewers switch over to Web

Further evidence has emerged that the Internet is eating into TV viewing time.

Further evidence has emerged that the Internet is eating into TV viewing time.

In a study of consumers in the UK, Germany, France and Sweden, 51 per cent of UK Web users said they had less time for TV since going online. Germany was slightly above average with 52 per cent, while France recorded 59 per cent.

The survey, by online ad specialist Adlink, concludes that print media will be “severely affected” by a decline in use, with 29 per cent of Net users reducing their offline media reading. It says national newspapers and business periodicals, in particular, have been “badly hit”.

Contrary to the scare stories, most European Net users don’t feel the virtual world is adversely affecting their “real world” experience. More than 90 per cent said the “time budget” they allocated to going online did not affect their social life.

The study found that over two thirds of Net users tended to visit a limited number of sites, with 70 per cent of UK users bookmarking 20 sites or less. This suggests new websites will have to think more imaginatively to make an impact. The research also found that 61 per cent used the Net to search for information on products or companies.

Adlink chief executive Michael Kleindl says: “Radical changes are taking place in media usage. Inevitably, the ad market also has to change to keep pace with these new developments.”

Adlink’s new media usage study will shortly be available for downloading from www.adlink.net.

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