Computer keyboard

Kuwait and Saudi Arabia respondents were the least likely to engage with news stories

Credit: Mike Traboe on Flickr. Some rights reserved

Newspaper website visitors in Latin America are among the most likely to leave comments under articles or submit their own user-generated material – with the UK trailing some way behind – according to new research.

The study of social media habits in 10 countries around the world, by media intelligence firm Kantar Media, found 35 per cent of British people read the comments on online news stories, and just 12 per cent would consider posting a comment themselves or submitting their own article.

The top three countries for reader engagement were Brazil, Argentina and Mexico - where between 41 and 47 per cent of respondents said they paid attention to user-generated material and about a quarter said they would post their own comments.

Kuwait and Saudi Arabia came bottom for the percentage of internet users submitting comments on newspaper websites - with eight and five per cent respectively.

The report's author, Geoff Wicken, said in a release: "Today's digital world has enabled consumers to move from being passive recipients of news coverage to playing an interactive role in how news is distributed.

"Savvy publishers understand that they need to encourage and engage with people providing content.

"At the same time, as demonstrated by our research, it is critical for global publishers to adapt their strategy by region. The trust that people have in online content differs country by country. This is a key consideration for publishers wanting to incorporate material from users."

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