Swearingen Communications Insights

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Trust in the Media Continues to Decline

When it comes to describing their level of trust in the mass media, 60 percent of Americans state, “Not very much,” or “not at all” according to a new Gallup survey.  As reported in the October issue of Public Relations Tactics, mistrust in the media is the highest that it’s been since Gallup started asking the question regularly in the 1990s.

Nevertheless, 60 percent of U.S. adults still say they prefer news stories produced by professional journalists, according to survey data from the Reynolds Journalism Institute.  So despite the popularity of digital platforms and citizen journalists, a majority of American adults agree that professional journalists play an important role in society.

Social media has its place in providing interesting, relevant content. But when it comes to delivering news via social media. these findings indicate that the public most trusts a professional journalist as the news provider.