Media consumption in Tunisia
Audio-visual media as most popular
TV is the most popular media sector with 98% of households owning a television, 83% use it to follow the news and 61% of the population considers that information broadcasted there is reliable. The programs are mostly in Arabic - only 34% of Tunisians also watch French-language television.
Radio is the second most important media, with 67% of households owning a radio and as many Tunisians follow the news through this media. In addition, 27% of Tunisians listen to the radio via internet. Most (91%) listen to the radio in Arabic, only 10% in French. 55% of the population considers that the information broadcasted is reliable.
The written press in decline
The written press is the least consulted media. After the 2011 Revolution, new newspapers were created, reaching a peak of 228 periodicals. But many titles have disappeared since them. According to estimates, about 50 newspapers exist today, and some 100,000 copies are sold per day. Only 38% of Tunisians consider that the information disseminated in the press is reliable and 76% of readers read newspapers in Arabic.
The illiteracy rate in Tunisia is also a factor to consider, that accounts to 18.8% according to the National Statistics Institute. It is even higher for women and in rural areas. This limits access to certain media, in particular to newspapers and online media.
Tunisians are increasingly connected
With an average of 29 hours per week, Tunisians spend more time surfing the net than watching television (26h), listening to the radio (15h) or reading the newspaper (3h). However, in terms of source of information, the internet is less important than the television and the radio, but more important than the written press. In 2016, 46% of Tunisians are using the internet, in contrast to only 13% in 2006. The country has a relatively developed infrastructure, with a mobile data penetration rate at 63.7% in February 2016, although only 16.2% have a broadband connection at home.
In addition to a constantly increasing internet penetration, the rise of social networks has enabled online media to increase their visibility. Thus, for the sites studied, on average 30% (Alexa estimations) of the traffic is generated by Facebook which is used by 34% of the Tunisians, thus a vast majority of internet users.