Television news is now considered the second least-trusted institution in the U.S., after Congress, according to Gallup’s annual survey on confidence in major U.S. institutions.
In Gallup’s annual poll measuring Americans’ trust in mass media, just 32% of those surveyed said they had “a great deal” or “a fair amount” of trust in the media, down eight percentage points from 2015. Fourteen percent of Republicans surveyed expressed trust, down from 32% in 2016.
A new Gallup poll shows that just 40% of Americans have “a great deal” or “a fair amount” of trust and confidence in the media to report the news fully, accurately and fairly. That figure, which ties Gallup statistics for 2012 and 2014, represents a steep decline from the 55% high in the late 1990s when Gallup began polling.
Americans’ faith in each of three major news media platforms — television news, newspapers, and news on the Internet — is at or tied with record lows in Gallup’s long-standing confidence in institutions trend. This continues a decades-long decline in the share of Americans saying they have “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in newspapers or TV news, while trust in Internet news remains low since the one prior measure in 1999.
Gallup has asked Americans to rate the honesty and ethical standards of members of various professions periodically since 1976, and annually since 1990. In this year’s poll, just 21% of the people surveyed ranked newspaper reporters with high or very high honesty and ethical standards. Next came lawyers, tying with 21% followed by TV reporters at 20% then advertisers at a miserable 14%.
Some 55% of Americans turn to TV first to get the news, according to a new poll from Gallup. The Internet was the second-most popular news source at 21%, followed by newspapers (9%) and radio (6%).
Gallup’s latest poll finds fewer than one in four Americans say they have “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in television and newspapers (23% for both). Americans’ confidence in TV news was highest, at 46%, in 1993, when Gallup first asked about it. The question does not distinguish among different types of news — network, cable and local.
Americans’ confidence in television news has hit an all-time low, according to a new survey by Gallup. Twenty-one percent of the 1,004 adults polled said they had “a great deal” or “a lot” of confidence in television news media, continuing a steady decline from the 46% who expressed confidence in television media in 1993.