Pew Finds Support for Watchdog Press, But Less Trust in Accuracy

By: E&P Staff Most Americans continue to support the "watchdog role" for the press, at 62%, according to a new survey. But, at the same time, trust that the news media gets the facts right has dropped to just 29%.

Both findings are in the latest Pew Research Center Survey released Friday.

The research center found that the percentage of respondents saying the press criticism of political leaders keeps them "from doing things that should not be done" is nearly as high now -- at 62% -- as it was in Pew's first poll in 1985, when 67% believed so.

"In 15 surveys since that initial poll, majorities have said that press criticism of political leaders keeps them from doing things that should not be done," the report stated. "Support for the press's watchdog role has continued even as positive views of press performance have plummeted. In Pew Research's most recent survey of press attitudes, released Sept. 13, just 29% said that news organizations get the facts straight; in 1985, nearly double that percentage (55%) said news stories were accurate."

The entire report can be found here.


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