Recent changes in Hong Kong’s political and media environments may affect consumer behaviors, but few major shifts were evident in H1 2021.
China’s National Security Law, which came into effect in Hong Kong in June 2020, effectively penalizes the expression of opinions that the Chinese government considers detrimental to its increasingly firm control of the former British colony. Several members of Hong Kong’s press establishment have been arrested, including the outspoken proprietor of the popular Apple Daily, which ceased 26 years of print publication in June 2021. Over time, the continuing crackdown may have a direct impact on consumption of several media, including printed news, but data gathered in H1 2021 didn’t clearly reflect that yet.
According to Q1 2021 data, 57.0% of internet users ages 16 to 64 had read a print newspaper at least once in the prior month.
Print magazines reached a smaller audience than print newspapers, at 45.8% of respondents. In both cases, youth was an indicator of relative apathy: Fewer than 40% of respondents ages 16 to 24 had read a print newspaper, and just 27.6% had read a print magazine. Readership held up much better among older cohorts and in affluent homes.