The Media Insight Project

The Media Insight Project is a collaboration of the American Press Institute (API) and The AP‑NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, with the objective of conducting high‑quality, innovative research meant to inform the news industry and the public about various important issues facing journalism and the news business.

The Media Insight Project brings together the expertise of both organizations and their respective partners, and involves collaborations among key staff at API, NORC at the University of Chicago, and The Associated Press.

Its studies are directed and funded primarily by API and are designed and conducted in partnership between the organizations.

The individual authors, researchers and contributors for each study are cited in the studies’ methodology sections.

About The American Press Institute
The American Press Institute (API) advances an innovative and sustainable local news industry by helping publishers understand and engage audiences, grow revenue, improve public‑service journalism, and succeed at organizational change. API is a national 501©3 nonprofit educational organization affiliated with the News Media Alliance. It works with and draws on the best ideas from technology, business, and publishing. Read more here

About The Associated Press‑NORC Center For Public Affairs Research
The AP‑NORC Center for Public Affairs Research taps into the power of social science research and the highest‑quality journalism to bring key information to people across the nation and throughout the world.

The Associated Press (AP) is the world’s essential news organization, bringing fast, unbiased news to all media platforms and formats.

NORC at the University of Chicago is one of the oldest and most respected, independent research institutions in the world.

The two organizations have established The AP‑NORC Center for Public Affairs Research to conduct, analyze, and distribute social science research in the public interest on newsworthy topics, and to use the power of journalism to tell the stories that research reveals.

The founding principles of The AP‑NORC Center include a mandate to preserve carefully and protect the scientific integrity and objectivity of NORC and the journalistic independence of AP. All work conducted by the Center conforms to the highest levels of scientific integrity to prevent any real or perceived bias in the research. All of the work of the Center is subject to review by its advisory committee to help ensure it meets these standards. The Center will publicize the results of all studies and make all datasets and study documentation available to scholars and the public.

Paths to Subscription: Why recent subscribers chose to pay for news

This research was conducted by the Media Insight Project — an initiative of the American Press Institute and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research   Funding for the news industry is going through an epochal change, the implications of which cannot be overstated. In the future, virtually all signals suggest less of the […]

After conversion: How to engage and retain new subscribers

Once a reader has moved down the path to subscription, the journey is not over. Winning someone over to subscribe is not the end of the relationship, nor is it the beginning. It is probably better understood as the middle. (A major issue, not fully addressed in this report, is reducing friction in the sign-up […]

What makes people ready to subscribe to local news, and what converts them

The consumer’s journey toward subscribing begins with engagement. How did the recent subscribers we studied engage with their newspaper before deciding to pay? The answers point to important and specific tasks for publications to reach future subscribers. Publishers must optimize content to be found in search engines. They also must have a robust social strategy—for […]

About the study

Survey methodology The data used in this report were drawn from two independent surveys conducted by the Media Insight Project, an initiative of the American Press Institute (API) and The Associated Press‑NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The first survey, Paying for News: Why People Subscribe and What It Says About the Future of Journalism, […]

Download the report or topline results

For printing and offline viewing, a PDF version of this report and the topline survey results are available for download.

Partisanship and paying for news

Democrats feel better about the news they pay for than Republicans The more negative attitudes of Republicans and independents toward the media when compared with Democrats also relate to differences in their assessment about paying for news. Republicans, for instance, are more likely than Democrats or independents to view their paid sources as overpriced. This […]

Partisanship and the media: How personal politics affect where people go, what they trust, and whether they pay

This research was conducted by the Media Insight Project — an initiative of the American Press Institute and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research New research shows that although Americans are in many ways divided in their attitudes toward the media, Republicans and Democrats are in many ways strikingly alike in their behavior […]

Partisanship and attitudes about news

Democrats have much more positive views of the media overall In our report on views on the media, Americans were asked a variety of questions about attitudes toward either the media generally or the media they use most often. Across the board, people feel more positive about the media they use than “the news media” […]

Partisanship and news behavior

Democrats and Republicans interact with news in similar ways, while independents are less newsy At a time when there seems a growing ideological divide in the news sources people turn to and in politics generally, is this divide impacting how people use news and who pays for news? Overall, there aren’t stark differences between people […]

Download the report or topline results

For printing and offline viewing, a PDF version of this study report and the topline survey results are available for download.