Confidence and trust in news media at ‘all-time low point’

The following is an excerpt from Gallup News.

Americans’ confidence in two facets of the news media — newspapers and television news — has fallen to all-time low points.

Just 16% of U.S. adults now say they have “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in newspapers and 11% in television news. Both readings are down five percentage points since last year.

Gallup has tracked Americans’ confidence in newspapers since 1973 and television news since 1993 as part of its annual polling about major U.S. institutions.

The latest readings are from a June 1-20 poll that saw declines in confidence ratings for 11 of the 16 institutions measured and no improvements for any.

Television news and newspapers rank nearly at the bottom of that list of institutions, with only Congress garnering less confidence from the public than TV news.

A majority of Americans have expressed confidence in newspapers only once — in 1979, when 51% did. But there is a wide margin between that and the second-highest readings of 39% in 1973 and 1990. 

Confidence in television news has never been higher than its initial 46% reading in 1993 and has averaged 27%, considerably higher than the current 11%. This is the fourth consecutive year that confidence in TV news is below 20%. 

Multiple Gallup measures of Americans’ views of the news media show a growing distrust. Last fall, Gallup found near-record-low trust in the media to report the news fully, accurately and fairly, and few Americans rated newspaper and television reporters as highly ethical in Gallup’s annual honesty and ethics of professions poll in December. 

Although trust in the media in the U.S. has been scarce for many years, confidence ratings for newspapers and TV news have never been as low as they are now.

Taken together, these data suggest that the media has a long way to go to win back the public’s confidence.

Read full survey results here.

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6 thoughts on “Confidence and trust in news media at ‘all-time low point’”

  1. James T. Caldwell

    News should be reported as accurate as possible. If someone wants to give their opinion or estimation, that is fine as long as they disclose it to their audience.

    I have little confidence in news accuracy for both newspaper and television news.

    Keep up the good reporting, you are one of the few that I trust.

  2. The “news media” works for the commercial interests that pay for its content, not the pubic. This is a hard sham to cover up. Of course the public is becoming aware of this advertorial, aka “fake news.”

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