New Poll Shows that Americans Heavily Distrust the Corporate Media

The United States finds itself dead last in media trust among 92,000 news consumers polled across 46 countries, according to a poll conducted by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism at Oxford. Only 29% of Americans surveyed trust the media. Finland is the country with the highest degree of media trust at 65%.

Rick Edmonds of Poynter noted that the Reuters Institute “found some improvement in trust in nearly all the countries surveyed — probably thanks to COVID-19 coverage — but not in the U.S. where the low rating was flat year to year.”

Indeed, there is a great degree of polarization in the US, which makes conservatives very hostile towards the media. Per the study, 75% of right-leaning respondents believe that media coverage of right wing views is biased. 

Local news, in its print and broadcast incarnations, was more trusted than national news. Though the study found that people are not very interested in local news. For example, just 21% of American respondents said that they pay for online news. For those who indicated that they pay for online news, 31% indicated that they have paid subscriptions with The New York Times, 24% are subscribed to The Washington Post, and just 23% are subscribed to local or regional outlets.

It’s no secret that the media has a very strong liberal bent and is very anti-nationalist. At times, the liberal media will make common cause with establishment figures on the Right to shut out any Dissident Right or nationalist discourse. 

Disseminating propaganda is not a recent development on the mainstream media’s part. The great Marine Major General Smedley Butler observed that the mainstream press used propaganda to get people to join the armed forces en masse during World War I — a misguided conflict that did not serve any pressing US interest.

This same dynamic persists into the present. The good news is that the Internet has decentralized information and has facilitated the rise of an alternative media ecosystem that challenges conventional corporate press narratives. 

As more people lose trust in the media, alternatives will naturally arise to fill in the void.