Americans Trust British, Public Broadcasting News Most

A recent survey shows Americans trust British news sources more than US-based news sources from The New York Times to their local news outlets. The exception is public broadcasting, which enjoys a high level of trust.

A recent survey shows Americans trust British news sources more than US-based news sources from The New York Times to their local news outlets. The exception is public broadcasting, which enjoys a high level of trust.

Three of the four most trusted news sources by Americans are British. Three of the top six are public television and radio. The seventh most trusted news source is also British.

Americans tend to trust British new sources more than US-based news sources, except for public television. Social media, the Internet and President Trump were rated among untrustworthy news sources.

Based on a survey of more than 8,700 people conducted by the University of Missouri’s Reynolds Journalism Institute, the most trusted news source for Americans is The Economist. The highest ranking US-based publication, in eighth place, is the Wall Street Journal.

On the flip side, the least trusted source of news was Occupy Democrats, a self-described counterbalance to the Tea Party. Following close behind in untrustworthiness were BuzzFeed, Breitbart, social media and President Trump, presumably referencing his Twitter posts.

The London-based BBC is the fourth most trusted news source, while CBS, NBC and ABC find themselves in the untrustworthy category, along with CNN, Fox and Huffpo.

The survey was undertaken in collaboration with 28 media organizations that invited participation. Participants self-selected and tended to live near the news outlets that promoted the survey.

That may account for appearance of the Dallas Morning NewsSeattle TimesDenver Post and Kansas City Star in the trusted category. The Los Angeles Times was in a dead heat with the Wall Street Journal for trustworthiness, but The Washington Post and The New York Times were down the list. Politico had a higher rating than the Post and the Times was followed by USA Today.

The results are a bit surprising since the political orientation of the participants listed to the liberal side of spectrum.

“The survey showed that politically liberal respondents were more trusting than conservatives, while Caucasians were more likely than non-whites to have confidence in the media,” according to a story about the survey by MarketWatch. “The level of trust remained fairly steady among people who identify themselves as liberals or moderates regardless of their age. Among conservatives, trust dropped off sharply with age.”

The survey comes as Trump and others deplore what they call “fake news,” which makes it ironic that many news consumers find him untrustworthy as a new source, ranked near the Internet and social media.