A growing number of Britons say they are actively avoiding the news out of frustration with Brexit's coverage, according to surveys, even though news sites report a record number of visitors who want to read about key developments.
The discrepancy suggests that while many people publicly insist they are avoiding news about the current UK political crisis, some may be unable to stop secretly swallowing up on updates on Britain's exit from the EU.
The YouGov poll commissioned by the Reuters Institute at Oxford University revealed that 35% of Britons now insist on trying to avoid the news "because of frustration with the intractable and polarizing nature" of the Brexit debate.
Most cited the negative impact the news has on their mood, along with other concerns, such as the feeling of exasperation that there is nothing that individuals can do to influence the country's political crisis. Voters remained particularly prone to say that their emotions were being negatively affected by the news, according to the institute's annual report on the state of the digital news industry.
However, individuals from four major British news sites said they had seen a record number of visitors in their major developments in the Brexit case – suggesting that the British public may be lying to themselves, at least when it comes to reading about the key developments. .
An executive at a major national news site said that while some people may be actively moving away, they have seen a lot of interest as a result of the Brexit news. Another said they were finding that the strong performance of the Brexit news was masking falls elsewhere on their site.
According to a BBC member, the BBC News website attracted 28 million unique visitors in January on the day of the first significant parliament vote on Theresa May's Brexit day, while 25 million checked the website the next day when they covered the vote of suspicion the prime minister.
Alleged Brexit fatigue among the British public has also been used by some news programs to justify the decline of the public.
Channel 4 said on Tuesday that the exasperation with the lawsuit was partly responsible for the decline in the number of people watching its news program, while BBC Radio 4's Today program also previously assigned floating listening numbers to the exasperation of the process.
The Reuters Institute report, which covers 38 different regions of the world, found that consumers' social media habits in many countries are changing. In many regions, people are spending less time with Facebook and more time with WhatsApp, Instagram and YouTube than last year.
The British also say they are losing confidence in the news, with the authors attributing this to increased political polarization: "Even the most reliable brands like the BBC are seen by many as pushing or suppressing agendas – especially polarizing issues like Brexit and climate change. "