Social media and online newspapers, a major source of news in Zambia-UNZA Don


A University of Zambia (UNZA) Researcher and Media Consultant says Facebook commands the greatest reach and is the first choice for news and information in Zambia.

In a study aimed at understanding the audience’s response to the emergence and presence of online newspapers, Mr. Parkie Mbozi has established that Facebook is the most preferred communication tool amongst people residing in Lusaka.

Mr. Mbozi further states that out of ten (10) individuals with Internet access in Lusaka Province, six (6) access and read online newspapers and the majority (nine in 10) access their favourite online newspapers through Facebook using mobile phones.

Mr. Mbozi, who is a Research Fellow at the University of Zambia’s Institute of Economic and Social Research (INESOR), says majority of readers in Zambia (64%) favoured online newspapers for ‘breaking and up-to-date news’, 62% for adverts, 55% for ‘more independent news’, 46% for ‘detailed news’, 38% ‘due to Internet access’ and another 38% for their interactive features. Thirty-five percent cited ‘credibility of the news’, 34% ‘uncensored news’, 30% ‘because they are cheaper than print’ and 11% ‘posting personalized comments’.

The UNZA Don further states that, as for the social motivations for reading online newspapers, most respondents cited information and news-seeking (or surveillance), followed by social interaction and avoidance (or aversion to traditional news media).

Mr. Mbozi adds that challenges attached to access and use of online newspapers are slow internet speeds, connectivity problems and high cost of Internet bundles.

Meanwhile, UNZA Vice-Chancellor Prof. Luke Evuta Mumba has congratulated Mr. Parkie Mbozi for showing commitment to research around social media and new forms of communication.

Prof. Mumba says Mr. Mbozi’s research is timely as it comes at a time when Zambia is trying to understand the workings of new media platforms. He says Mr. Mbozi’s study is important as it provides empirical data to guide policy around Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs).

The UNZA Vice-Chancellor, further states that a study on ICTs is important in this era of internet and social media abuse. “there is a lot of abuse online and this study definitely adds to data that will be used not only for providing policy direction but for sensitization efforts aimed at curbing abuse online. UNZA is proud of this study” Prof. Mumba says.

Other aspects of Mr. Mbozi’s study included: use of and gratification from content and interactive features of online newspapers, perceived credibility, the impact of the emergence of online newspapers on traditional (mainstream) media and their political influence among Zambian readers.

Mr. Mbozi is a Research Fellow at the University of Zambia’s Institute of Economic and Social Research (INESOR) and he is also a submitted PhD candidate in the Centre for Communication, Media and Society (CCMS) at the University of KwaZulu Natal in South Africa.


  1. Zambian citizen above, you are correct. That is why we need to regulate Facebook and social media. A tax on Facebook use is not a bad idea. Kz

  2. it is such a serious source of consistently inconsistent news items and if we are not careful it can erode the little that is left in us. I hate this way of getting information

  3. So let’s just say, social media and online newspapers, a major source of both real and fake news in Zambia.
    But many people still do not have access to the internet and very few use smart phones.

  4. they are waiting for foreign aid to give unza a face lift.
    I miss the days when goma lakes had fish and in summer you’d see sprinklers irrigating the lawns of unza.
    nobody has any pride in Zambia it seems. surely they can scrape off the walls and give some buildings a facelift, but they are waiting for someone from outside to come and take that up….what a shame
    iwe kaiza, tax WhatsApp/pf, ni WhatsApp/fb ya nyoko or pf?.

  5. Can someone explain to me why PF has chose. To attack all Tonga’s with such HATE SPEECH.

    Even my two year old girl is being attached by Ministers. Why? What has she done to deserve such words from Nkandu Lou and Cabinet Minister and MP paid by taxpayers, including Tonga’s?

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