The evidence presented in this report was collected through desk research, expert interviews, sessions at World Economic Forum events and an online survey conducted in October 2015 across the USA, Germany, South Africa, Brazil and China, with a representative sample of about 1,000 digital media users in each country. Opinions and additional supporting evidence have been provided through a project blog series.
While it cannot be comprehensive, this report offers a broad picture of relevant developments in digital media and their wider implications. The aim is to raise awareness, spark further discussion and stimulate the Media, Entertainment & Information (MEI) industry as well as policy-makers to collaborate on cultivating the positive implications of digital media and discouraging the negative.
Jakarta, Indonesia 19 April 2015
World Economic Forum on East Asia
“Analogue Hearts and Digital Minds: The Impact of Digital Media on Human Behaviour”
New York, USA 13 May 2015
MEI Industry Spring Strategy Meeting
“Exploring the Drivers behind Changing Media Consumption Habits”
Geneva, Switzerland 12 August 2015
Young Global Leaders (YGL) and Alumni Annual Summit
“Digital Changes in Society”
Dalian, People’s Republic of China 10 September 2015
Annual Meeting of the New Champions 2015
“China’s Media Society: Impacts of Changing Media Consumption Patterns in China”
Expert interviews conducted for the project were filmed and extracts of these interviews are featured in a series of videos focusing on the different topics covered in the report.
A number of project-related articles were published on the World Economic Forum’s Agenda Blog. They can be accessed through the Shaping the Future Implications of Digital Media for Society project website on weforum.org.
NB: All opinions expressed in the project videos and blog series are those of the interviewees and authors respectively. The World Economic Forum is an independent and neutral platform dedicated to generating debate on the key topics that shape global, regional and industry agendas.
Implications of Digital Media Survey
The Forum conducted an online survey in October 2015, in collaboration with comScore and Willis Towers Watson, with a representative sample of 5,070 digital media users aged 15-69 years drawn from:
- Brazil (1,033 participants)
- People’s Republic of China (1,019 participants)
- Germany (1,023 participants)
- South Africa (997 participants)
- USA (998 participants)
See Table 1 for an overview of demographic characteristics
Segmentations used in Implications of Digital Media Survey
Millennials: reported age between 15 and 34 (born 1981-2000)
Generation X: reported age between 35 and 50 (born 1965-1980)
Baby Boomers: reported age between 51 and 69 (born 1947-1964)
Sporadic users versus frequent users
Sporadic users: the sample who reported spending less time than average per week consuming digital media
Frequent users: the sample who reported spending more time than average per week consuming digital media