News by Maddyness
8 June 2020
8 June 2020
Temps de lecture : 5 minutes
5 min

Changes in the use of tech during COVID-19

Recent survey findings from JIN Agency in partnership with OpinionWay shows that Brits are leading in terms of digital use in comparison to France, Germany and the US. However, there are growing fears about fake news and Millennials are increasingly concerned about their data privacy.
Temps de lecture : 5 minutes

In comparison to other countries, a higher number of Britons are using technology to fulfil their needs during the pandemic, such as shopping, communicating and following the news.

Data from a new Opinion Way survey commissioned by digital agency JIN shows that as more of the British population follow the news online, there is an increase in fear of fake news. 89% of Brits are concerned about the spread of fake news, with 49% more concerned than before the crisis.

At a glance, here are a few survey highlights:

  • Fake news: 54% of Gen Z are concerned about fake news
  • Data online: 39% of millennials are now more concerned about the data generated about them when online
  • Impact of tech: 38% and 35% of Gen Z and millennials respectively are more concerned about the impact of technology on their daily lives
  • Video conferencing: 44% have an account for video conferencing
  • 20% say that they have created an account during the pandemic that they will use in the future

With a significant 60% of British people following the news more regularly, it is expected that there is more concern about the spread of fake news. Gen Z saw a higher percentage concerned about fake news, which may be due to the fact that they understand how easy it is to spread false information.

This could be due to the notion that Millennials and Gen Z are more cautious about the spread of propaganda by the mass media as many use social media as a source of information.

Increased concern for fake news globally

Whilst the countries have widely adopted digital tools to follow the news and stay in touch, there was an increase in concerns about fake news, privacy and the impact of technology in our daily lives. Fake news is a vastly growing concern in all 4 countries, particularly in Germany, the UK and the US where people declared to be are more concerned about it than before.

This could be because people realise the dangers of misinformation around COVID-19. Global health experts wrote an open letter addressed to Facebook, Twitter, and Google to warn about the viral misinformation on social media threatening lives around the world.

Concerns related to the impact of technology in our daily lives vary across countries. In France and Germany, there are as many people who are feeling less concerned than before about the impact of technology than people who are more concerned. In the UK and the US, the proportion of people who are increasingly concerned about it is higher.

Increased use of digital across generations

Britain is leading in terms of digital acceleration as internet use across generations has increased since the crisis. Similarly, to the US, the UK also saw a large rise in the use of video conferencing across generations. In Britain, 19% of those aged 65+ are using video conferencing, whereas in only 11% in France and 5% in Germany are doing the same.

In fact, Britain’s had a higher portion of baby boomers adopting digital for online grocery delivery and food delivery, as on average 17% were using online means for this, whereas only 8% of the same in France. This could highlight that Britain’s population is more tech-savvy across generations in comparison to France and Germany.

Data privacy concern

Out of all the demographic, millennials are the most concerned about their data privacy online. This indicates that there may worry around cybersecurity for this demographic. Another notion is that millennials understand the value of their personal data online and therefore feel more concerned about their data information. To add to this, millennials and Gen Z seem much more concerned about the impact of technology on our daily lives.

Global trend: Amazon stands out but the UK values supermarkets during the crisis

Whilst all the countries listed Amazon in their Top 3 standout brands, Brits valued the efforts of the British supermarket chains during the crisis. Brands that displayed empathy and support towards the wider society were viewed more favourably.

All 3 supermarket brands had initiatives to support the community, which may have contributed to people feeling more connected to the community. The supermarket chains in Britain came together to draw ‘feed the nation’ contingency plans to help cope with the spike in panic buying.

Has the crisis increased the trust in governmental institutions?

A significant 25% noted that governmental institutions played a major role in helping society during the pandemic. Britain was the only country where a significant portion of the population listed governmental institutions as having a positive impact during the crisis. Within government institutions, hospitals were listed, and our National Health Service was highly praised during this time, which amplified Britain’s shared pride in the NHS.

Britain becomes more united

73% of Brits felt as or more connected to their neighbours than before. It appears that communities really came together during this time of crisis. Brits felt the most connected to their communities out of all 3 countries surveyed. In fact, initiatives such as Nextdoor, a social media app which connects neighbours by postcode, surged in use amid the crisis.

Download the full report "The impact of technology during COVID-19" here.

Founded in 2012, JIN is a communications agency specialising in digital influence. Since its inception, JIN has served over 200 clients across the globe in over 40 countries, leveraging diverse talent to deliver results to clients in the following sectors: tech, food & beverage, health, finance, industrials and real estate.

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Unsplash © Marius Masalar