Predicting mobile news use among college students: The role of press freedom in four Asian cities

Ran Wei, Ven hwei Lo, Xiaoge Xu, Yi Ning Katherine Chen, Guoliang Zhang

Research output: Journal PublicationArticlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


This study explores how mobile phone-savvy Asian college students use mobile news, especially news posted on mobile-accessible Twitter-like microblogs, to stay informed about current events. Our survey of more than 3500 college students in Shanghai, Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan asks why young people turn to mobile phones for news and how the news-getting behavior is related to the level of press freedom in their respective societies. The results show that using mobile phones to read news and follow news posts on mobile-accessible microblogs is rapidly on the rise and significant differences among respondents in the four cities exist; press freedom was found to be negatively related to reading and following news via mobile phones. Finally, the study discusses the role of press freedom in accounting for these societal-level differences.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)637-654
Number of pages18
JournalNew Media and Society
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2014


  • Culture
  • microblog
  • mobile news
  • press freedom
  • smart phone
  • value expectancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Sociology and Political Science


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