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Media Credibility Declines Again

According to a new poll out from the Pew Research Center, trust in major media outlets continues its long and steady decline:

Since the mid-1980s, Americans have become increasingly skeptical of what they see, hear, and read in the media, and almost no major news outlet has escaped this trend. For many media outlets there has been little change in public evaluations in the last four years, but ratings for some continue to inch downward.
As a consequence, there is far less variance in public views of the credibility of major news organizations than in the late 1990s. Some of the sources that were viewed as the most credible then have seen their numbers fall substantially, and today no news organization stands out from the crowd as a significantly more reliable source of information.
Changing public views of CNN perhaps best exemplify these trends. In 1998, 42% of those familiar enough with CNN to rate the network said they believed all or most of what CNN reported, significantly more than for any broadcast or cable news outlet tested. Today, just 28% give CNN the highest believability rating, a share which is statistically indistinguishable from most other television news sources.

Interestingly, Fox News and NPR stand out as the two news sources that have not experienced notable credibility declines – a phenomenon Pew attributes to the partisan nature of their audiences. CNN ranks first in terms of credibility, and MSNBC ranks last.


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