A new poll of over 10,000 people by GlobeScan, designed to determine how much, or how little, people trust the media, was conducted in ten nations: Brazil, Egypt, Germany, Indonesia, India, Nigeria, Russia, South Korea, the UK and the US. Great stats.
Sponsored by the BBC, the Media Center and Reuters (and therefore unlikely to cast the media in a bad light), the poll found that 82% of the respondents felt national television was their most trusted news source.
Overall, though there were differences country to country, TV was the most trusted news source, followed by national/regional newspapers at a 75% trust level, local newspapers at 69%, public radio at 67% and international satellite TV at 56%. Internet blogs were the least trusted source at only 25%.
No matter what the source, in general two out of three people (65%) believe that the news is reported accurately, but 57% believe governments interfere too much with the media and only 42% think journalists can report freely.
Nigerians believed most strongly that government interferes too much in the media (75%) followed by South Korea (71%), Brazil (64%), Indonesia (59%), Britain (58%) and India (56%). Sadly, in the US, where "freedom of the press" has long been a long-held tenet, 52% of the respondents now say the government interferes too much in the news.
More people trust the media than their governments. Media is trusted by an average of 61% compared to 52% for governments across the countries polled. But the US bucked the trend — with government ahead of media on trust (67% vs 59%) along with the UK (51% vs 47%).
Overall, trust in the media varies across the 10 countries, with the greatest trust expressed in developing countries — where trust in national governments tends to be low — such as Nigeria (88% have a lot or some trust), Indonesia, India, and Egypt.
Interestingly, American, at 59%, and Russians, at 58%, express nearly equal levels of trust in their media "to operate in the best interests of society."
Over three out of four respondents (77%) prefer to check several news sources instead of relying on just one, and that was especially true for Internet users.
The poll found that more younger people use online sources, as it was rated the first choice among 19% of people ages 18-24 compared to just 3% in the 55-64 age range. But overall 56% valued the opportunity to obtain news online, with South Koreans being the most enthusiastic at 85%. Britain was at 57% and the US at 60%.