A survey by the Russian PR Association of Russia’s Generation Z, delivered at the PRO.PR Conference 2016 in Montenegro, revealed some interesting – and perhaps reassuring – insights on Generation Z reading and e-reading habits – at least, Russian Gen-Z. Seems that anxiety about the younger generation’s reading habits is universal. But technophobes might take heart at the results, while technophiles may sigh. On the other hand, at least plenty of reading seems to be going on – e or otherwise.
The survey polled just under 300 men and 350 girls across a series of focus groups, comparing 16-18 year olds with adults aged 35-45 years. In overall internet use, the survey actually found little difference between Gen-Z teens and adults, including number of social media friends, reasons for using the internet, etc. But reading habits are significant in Generation Z. The poll results showed Gen-Zers read more fiction than non-fiction, would like to read more, actively prefer paper books to ebooks, and when they do read ebooks, download them for free rather than buying them.
Generation Z are less avid gadget fans than adults, in Russia at least. The average Gen-Zer in the sample owns 2.7 gadgets, versus 6.9 per adult. And 70 percent of them say that they will limit their own children’s use of gadgets.
So in Russia there does seem to be some comfort for fans of old style paper, who fear that the upcoming generation will abandon the format for ebooks. Perhaps it’s not so elsewhere. But I wouldn’t be surprised to find similar patterns in the West.