A new report from the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism offers a bit more insight into what’s driving distrust in news organizations across the world.
Working with YouGov, the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism polled around 18,000 people across nine countries (U.S., Germany, UK, Ireland, Spain, Denmark, Australia, France, and Greece) to gather qualitative data about people’s trust in news and social media. After respondents were asked whether they agreed with statements like “the news media does a good job in helping me distinguish fact from fiction,” they were invited to share their reasons in an open-ended text box. Reuters’ Nic Newman and Richard Fletcher coded these 7,915 responses to categorize the issues and concerns that are fueling peoples’ distrust.
Here’s some of what they found:
— Why don’t people trust the news? Concern about bias, spin, and hidden agendas. Two-thirds of people (67%) cited one of these factors as a reason they don’t trust what they read. Unsurprisingly, concerns about political biases were particularly significant in the U.S., where 34% of respondents who distrusted news media cited concerns about political bias as the reason why.