Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Fox leads for trust

Americans do not trust the major tv news operations in the country- except for Fox News.

Our newest survey looking at perceptions of ABC News, CBS News, CNN, Fox News, and NBC News finds Fox as the only one that more people say they trust than distrust. 49% say they trust it to 37% who do not.

CNN does next best at a 39/41 spread, followed by NBC at 35/44, CBS at 32/46, and ABC at 31/46.

Predictably there is a lot of political polarization in which outlets people trust. 74% of Republicans trust Fox News, but no more than 23% trust any of the other four sources. We already knew that conservatives don't trust the mainstream media but this data is a good prism into just how deep that distrust runs.

For Democrats the numbers are a complete opposite- a majority trust all of ABC, CBS, CNN, and NBC while only 30% have faith in Fox News. Continuing the trend in our polling over the last few months that independents hate everything, a plurality of them distrust all five outlets we looked at.

NBC is the most popular choice among Democrats at a 62/17 spread. Although 'NBC News' was the entity named in the question it's possible respondents could have been lumping MSNBC in with it given the good numbers on the left. At a 17/69 spread CBS was the least popular with Republicans, perhaps indicating residual unhappiness from the Dan Rather days. CNN finished second among Democrats, Republicans, and independents suggesting that it may be the least polarizing of the major tv news operations.

These numbers suggest quite a shift in what Americans want from their news. A generation ago Walter Cronkite was the most trusted man in the country because of his neutrality. Now people trust Fox the most precisely because of its lack of neutrality. It says a lot about where journalism is headed.

Full results here

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227 comments:

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Anonymous said...

Dear Fellow American;
Fox News leads the way because they display moral courage in covering the news factually in an age of moral relativity and a fear induced PoliticalCorrectness. God bless them for this good effort.
As the old saying we used in Nam, you always know that you are over the target when you draw the most flack!
lja/JMJ

Anonymous said...

That makes me sad. The 24/7 hate network leads the way. It means that there are a lot of folks who like to listen to these commentators. For real news I go to CNN. But I suspect most people are not watching any cable news. They are watching other things. You have 100% of 30% of the voters. Most of those in their 50s and 60s are more. I am 65 and I would not listen if you paid me. I do remember over the course of the Presidential election Fox had these 30 % tuned in too and guess what despite the 24/7 hate cycle President Obama won. So you can fool some of the people some of the time but gesh you cant fool us all most of the time.

Anonymous said...

Two points on ratings. Never in the past, present, or future will ratings define what is worthy of "trust." Most persons trust Warren Buffett on economic issues more than Angelina Jolie, but if both are scheduled to talk about the economy at the same time, guess which one will get better ratings. Why? The assumption that people tune into programs because they want to raise the bar on their understanding of complex issues is silly. FOX is great at ENTERTAINMENT, while CNN is fairly good at news. CNN does a poor job at entertainment, about as bad as Fox does at real news. Regardless, if it was the case that all networks are rabidly fringe left-wing, then the ratings of left-wing news dwarfs FOX.
Second, about advertising and ad fees. CNN is the most watched news network on television. It also has a far younger demographic than Fox. Advertisers are less interested in accessing Fox's audience, who are less likely to change buying habits, and who tend to sit on the channel all day long, than they are hitting as many eyeballs per day as they can--especially if those eyeballs are young. Fox's channel stagnation gives it higher ratings, but CNN still has more viewers per day--a big advertising plus.

John said...

The author said FOX lacked neutrality. This is statistically true. They are less neutral than any other network (save MSNBC who is off the deep end now). You are making the assumption, incorrectly, that the author is making a judgement about FOX being on the "wrong side" of opinion. The truth is Americans are inundated with TONS of conflicting information almost always reported as fact. Americans, on par, like FOX because they say here's the story and here's how we see it. Sometimes indirectly other times not but they are generally consistent. They are seen as honest and up front because of that even by their detractors. I am one of the few, I'd guess, who trust them all very little. I still read a paper.

Anonymous said...

Fox is a joke. This poll is a bigger joke.

Unknown said...

A lot of sound and fury signifying
nothing, by deluded idealogues of
the left who cannot accept what the
polls and the voters of Virginia, New Jersey and Massachusetts are saying,
and who see reality not as it is but as they are, arrogant know-it-alls.

P.S. Anonymous needs to take a break
and "get a life".

Unknown said...

yes, where is PBS?

I appreciate the analysis of the poll provided by Anonymous. It answered my questions about the sample and the coorelations between political persuasion FOX trust. You cut though the spew and rant and dug up the goods.

In a psychological vien, I think it was Kevin (maybe not?) that said (paraphrasing) that trust was a biproduct of mistrusting everything else. This makes a lot of sense actually. Also, who ever criticized the method of polling, by telephone survey, while off- base with the claim that that is unscientific, was actually on to a behavioral bias in the study.

Journalistic ethics are vital to democracy. Those who said it was stupid are perhaps a little more facist than republican.

this article was a fair poor interpretation of the study,but a good conversation starter.

I sign off in lamentation over the one perspective truth in all of this thread that cuts the deepest. That is that we are polarized.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Where is PBS?
----------------

PBS/NPR wouldn't be on the air if they weren't sucking at the government teat.

Anonymous said...

Well, this seals it--the truth is out there. If this is true, then no one will EVER go broke underestimating the stupidity and gullibility of the American people.

This does truly show WHY the country went to pot during the Bush years. Apparently, Americans like to be lied to and have their prejudices and bias pandered to than to be unsettled by truth and integrity?

Congratulations, America--you've just stupefied yourself. It's a sad state of being for those of us who must dwell among the Comfortably Ignorant!

Anonymous said...

And who took walter cronkite's position as the most trusted newsman in America? Shockingly, its not the insanity that is glen beck or the laughout loud comedy that is sean hannity but rather comedy central's own Jon Stewart.

Chris said...

Say what you will about guys like Hannity and Beck, but at least they are honest about their bias. They will freely and happily admit to being conservatives with conservative points of view. They do not present themselves as objective, middle of the road non partisans. You are free to agree or disagree with their spin, but they make no effort to conceal which side they are coming from.

Brokaw, Rather, Jennings, Couric, Williams, Gibson, Cooper et. al., on the other hand, would have us believe they are objective and unbiased truth tellers with no ideological axe to grind. They are easily as far to the left as Beck and Hannity are to the right and just as guilty of biased infused commentary, but they would never admit this, not even if you put thumbscrews to them.

That in a nutshell is what drove so many away from the old mainstream media. There’s nothing wrong with editorializing as long as it is clearly labeled as such. It’s only a problem when it masquerades as objective journalism.

Anyone wishing to understand why the old media is dying and FOX is thriving should read “Bias” and “Arrogance” by Bernie Goldberg.

Anonymous said...

Wow, of the 1100 people they chose to survey, 14% identified themselves as liberal, and 40% as conservative?
Does the North Carolina company conductiong the poll not have long-distance?

Anonymous said...

I'd be interesting in a party break down of respondents believing Jon Stewart is a journalist and/or news reporter. I believe the answer will explain why Fox is the most trusted network for people who think.

livfreeordi said...

Regarding your comment, "These numbers suggest quite a shift in what Americans want from their news. A generation ago Walter Cronkite was the most trusted man in the country because of his neutrality. Now people trust Fox the most precisely because of its lack of neutrality."

I'm not sure I agree.

"Neutrality" is a matter of opinion.

I NEVER thought Cronkite was "neutral". In my view, he was a knee jerk liberal..who was just good at hiding it better than current anchors.

In the view of many of us, what is perceived as "bias" by liberals when they watch Fox, is the LACK of knee jerk anti-conservative bias that has been prevalent on all the other networks for decades.

The bias on the other networks has been going on for so long.. that liberals perceive it as natural.. and "unbiased".

For decades.. many of us have disagreed, but had no news network that respected our views and that didn't treat us with total arrogant contempt.

Well..that has changed.. and , obviously, liberals aren't happy when they not only no longer have a monopoly on the news media, but the so-called "conservative' news network is kicking the other news networks' collective butts.

It apparently only adds insult to injury, in their eyes.

Too bad.

livfreeordi said...

Anonymous said...
I've read another poll. It said a decade ago the nation average for IQ was 100, and now we are at 98.
-----------------------------------

FINALLY!!..an explanation on how someone as unqualified as Obama could get elected!

(Remember! The next time you want to make a snide comment about the intelligence of an American population that likes Fox News..

..A sword cuts both ways.)

livfreeordi said...

Dear PPP:

Trying to tell self-deluded liberals how it really IS...so they have some warning about what may be coming..doesn't win you much gratitude or many accolades does it?

Just a sampling of some of the comments on this thread by individuals who are obviously unhappy by the results of your poll.

"Americans, the most stupid people on the entire planet."

"It shows nothing more than how stupid, uninformed and naive Americans have become."

To paraphrase Lenin, "Fox News is the opium of the masses."

"those with a lobotomy -- trust Faux News!'

"There are intelligent people and those that watch FOX News.
"

I could go on and on but the common thread is pretty obvious.

No attempt to refute the results of your poll with any facts.. just angry immature name calling...whining that anyone who could like Fox News is either stupid or uneducated!!

I beg to differ.

Measured IQ of 160+.

BA, 1972,summa cum laude in International Studies

MA, 1973 with Honors, International Politics and economics , Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy

Honor Graduate,1976 United States Air Force Security Police Academy Officers' School

MD degreee with Honors, 1984, Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences, Bethesda, Maryland

Neither stupid NOR "uneducated"

And I like Fox News and trust it more than any other news network.

The elitist kind of arrogance that leads those on the Left to automatically dismiss those who disagree with them as "stupid' or "uneducated' is precisely the kind of arrogance that led, at least partially, to the downfall of liberal politicians like John Kerry and Martha Coakley.

To those of you who lazily refuse to argue on the basis of the facts but merely dismiss those you disagree with as "stupid".

It's time you woke up, acknowledged reality and paid some attention to the warnings given you by polls such as those taken by PPP..before the whole country bitch slaps you, AGAIN, into acknowledgment of that reality next election.

Thx 4 Fish said...

Fox has done an excellent job of marketing themselves as the opposite of what they are. Only about 10% of their programming is news (the rest is opinion). Yet they have News in their name. They have told their viewers for years that the other networks have a liberal bias and only Fox can be trusted. It is advertising and propaganda all rolled into one. They have created a cultish following of people who all have the same political beliefs from watching years of propaganda thinking that is's news. It is shameful and disgusting. That any Americans think they are getting news from Faux. They are the most Distrusted Name in News.

Chris said...

“My take is that FOX succeeds mostly by being divisive, and I think this polling bears that out...If you're not convinced, then put it this way. When was the last time you heard someone on the liberal networks describe republicans as "unAmerican"? FOX commentators make that assertion about liberals all the time."

Well, I frankly don't know about "unAmerican", but both CNN’s Anderson Cooper and MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann have routinely used the derogatory term “teabaggers” in reference to Tea Party attendees, and Olbermann added that they were “poor, dumb, manipulated bastards.” Call me crazy, but that sounds somewhat divisive to me. I realize, of course, that no one even watches Olbermann, but that doesn’t mean he is not divisive.

DiscerningReader said...

So much talk and few look at the actual poll: Here it is:
http://www.publicpolicypolling.com/pdf/PPP_Release_National_126.pdf

It's a robo-call telephone poll. Ask yourself:
1. Who sits at home during the day and answers unknown calls?
2. What about those who are not home, don't have time, have caller-id, voicemail, use cellphones exclusively, or simply hang up on robo-calls? (Isn't that most of us?)

The proof is in the pudding: 18% of those asked were over 65 years old, 63% were over 45 and 91% were over 30 years old! Since younger Americans lean heavily to the left, you can throw this poll in the trash.

Add to this, that they only called registered voters (Note: in the US you're not automatically registered, plus if you move you have to re-register. Which age-group is the most mobile?)
- What about those who are not US citizens or not registered to vote? Don't they watch TV? Which way do they lean?

And finally, the question itself is stupid. Whether you trust this poll or not, the headline could just as well have read: "Least skeptical viewers choose Fox News"! (which is natural selection if you ask me, as any sensibly discerning person gave up on this network a long time ago.)

MONIKA said...

Fox has a good reputation. And it is not gained in a day. They maintained their good and honest work. They serve the nation with sincerely. I watch FOX in my Satellite TV

Anonymous said...

Here is a newsflash:No new network is neutral in general they may have a few neutral newscasters and that's the fact.All of the news channels except Fox is liberal while fox is conservative and Fox is beating all of them.That only means American ppl are fed up with one sided biased opinions and they want the other side's perspective also and since there is only one that provides other side's perspective obviously Fox is #1.

Anonymous said...

It is hard bo believe how networks would rather "GO UNDER" than give the news a "Joe Friday touch, Just the Facts". Instead we get louzy reporting, biased view or no views, ex global warming, Obama.

Anonymous said...

This is hilarious. These are numbers, people. Not a debate. Statistics that clearly show Fox is a Republican/conservative news outlet and CNN/network news are Democrat/liberal outlets. Duh! Neutrality never did exist in the news biz. Grow up.

Anonymous said...

Whats so interesting about this poll, as reported, is the fact that "only" 30% of the Democrats being polled thought Fox News to be most trustworthy. ONLY? That, my friends, compares, in total, with ABC at 31/46,CBS at 32/46 and NBC at 35/44. Biased or not, like it or not, Fox News does indeed present a differing point of view that the main stream media does not. Thank goodness!

Christian Liberty said...

Fox is the most trusted news network in America. Those who PRETEND that Fox isn't trustworthy are in the minority. Until progressives admit that Fox is more objective and more honest and more informed and higher quality news than the left-wing trash on other propaganda outlets, progressives will always remain a minority. No wonder America trusts Fox more than the propaganda hacks at NBC, CBS, ABC, CNN, or MSNBC, or Comedy Central.

Anonymous said...

Argumentum ad populum, GCComputer. Learn it. Fox is pure lies and ratings don't change that.

Anonymous said...

I watched FOX news the other night and switched to NBC news at 6:30 pm to see what they were reporting. NBC had the same story, but they omitted some very important facts to spin the information in favor to the left. NBC cannot be relied upon to tell the whole story without bias.

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