Thursday, September 27, 2012

Public No Longer Trusts Media

“There is not really any free press anymore, but instead a Ministry of Truth, in which PBS, NPR, the New York Times, the Washington Post, CBS, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, Newsweek, TIME, AP, McClatchy, and Reuters are de facto extensions of the Obama campaign.”

--Victor Davis Hanson, “PJ Media” 


This is a remarkable chart. It shows how rapidly confidence in media accuracy is deteriorating. And according to the Gallup report where the chart appeared, “independents are sharply more negative compared with 2008,” meaning, Gallup says, those most up in the air about who to vote for are “quite dissatisfied” about lack of access to fair coverage.

Pew Research has compiled similar data on the public's declining belief in the media, with more specific information on how people view different news sources. Note that FOX News and the New York Times are the least believed (see chart below); many (not me) would be shocked to find both (not one or the other) at the bottom.

Seems to me that FOX News has had a strong influence on the legacy media, including the New York Times. Because FOX presents the conservative side with such vigor, mainstream liberal outlets ever more openly push the progressive view, showing less and less concern about bias. As a consequence, the public is now wary of all news sources, with a majority no longer believing the New York Times.

Don’t get me wrong. I see FOX as a net positive, and relatively balanced in its news coverage (outside of Sean Hannity and other openly conservative shows). But to the dominant legacy media, FOX is alien, very wrong, and liberals must fight fire with fire.

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