Ofcom research shows children trust their parents on coronavirus information

12 May 2020

We have today published research on how children are receiving and acting on news and information during the coronavirus pandemic.

The research is based on responses from over 500 children aged 12 to 15, and covers weeks three and four of the lockdown. It found:

  • nearly all of them (96%) have accessed news about Covid-19 in the past week;
  • ninety-two per cent of children who speak to family members for news about the virus are confident they tell them the truth about it. The BBC’s reporting on the pandemic is also highly trusted by those children that use it;
  • children are more likely to turn to BBC TV than other broadcasters for news about the outbreak (49%), compared with a third who use ITV (30%) and a fifth who get information from Sky (21%);
  • just under half of children use social media as a source of information about the virus, with YouTube (20%), Facebook or Facebook Messenger (20%) and Instagram (18%), proving most popular;
  • half of children say they’re finding it hard to know what is true or false about Covid-19; and
  • a clear majority of children say the crisis is showing good things about our country, such as more support for the NHS

We have also published our latest weekly research which shows how adults in the UK are accessing news and information about the coronavirus. During week six of lockdown:

  • the majority of respondents continued to access news about the coronavirus at least once a day. But fewer than one in ten people now access news about the pandemic at least 20 times a day, compared with a one in four who did so in week one;
  • women are more likely than men to actively avoid news about the virus; and
  • there has been a small drop in the number of people who have come across false or misleading information about the coronavirus in the last week. Only 4% of people forwarded or shared the misinformation, compared with 7% in week one.

We will now be publishing the key findings from this research on a fortnightly basis, with our next full report due on Tuesday 26 May. Our interactive data report will continue to be updated on a weekly basis.