Only about one-third (34%) of American adults have a great deal or fair amount of trust in the mass media when it comes to reporting the news fully, accurately, and fairly, down from 36% last year, per survey results from Gallup. Although trust hasn’t quite fallen to 2016’s nadir, another milestone has been set this year.
For the first time in the survey’s half-century history, the percentage of adults who have no trust in the mass media at all (38%) has exceeded the share who have a great deal or fair amount (34%).
To illustrate just how much of a development that is, at the turn of the century, in 1999, the share with a great deal or fair amount of trust in the mass media was 5 times higher than the share with no trust at all (55% and 11%, respectively).
What’s changed since then? Hyper-partisanship. And that’s all too apparent in this latest survey. Fully 70% of Democrats reported having a great deal or fair amount of confidence in mass media, a figure which plummets to just 14% of Republicans and 27% of Independents.
Given their distrust in mass media, Americans are turning to other sources for the news. Half get their news on social media, per recent research, including 1 in 10 who regularly get news on TikTok, a Chinese-owned video app that is the subject of national security fears.
For more on the Gallup research, check out the results here.
About the Data: The results are based on a September telephone survey of 812 US adults (18+).