British public losing trust in newspapers, survey finds

Less than a fifth of British people say they trust newspapers, down from about 30 per cent last year and well below the global average, according to a new report published today.

The 10th annual Edelman Global Trust Barometer, based on a survey of more than 4,500 college-educated adults with an interest in news, found that despite the take-up of social and digital media, 25 to 34-year-olds now trust the traditional media more than the older generation, aged 35 to 64.

But trust in the media overall has fallen in the past year, with 19 per cent of respondents in the UK saying they trusted newspapers.

This is down from 29 per cent in last year’s survey and compares with a global figure of 34 per cent.

Television fared slightly better, and was trusted as a news source by a third of the people questioned.

In the year that saw widespread coverage of the Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand affair, trust in radio fell from 53 per cent to 33 per cent.

According to Edelman, which interviewed people in 20 countries, the UK now has the lowest level of trust in the media as an institution, at 28 per cent.

The countries where respondents felt they trusted the media the most were Indonesia, on 79 per cent, and China, with 73 per cent.

The Edelman research was based on telephone interviews over a six-week period in November and December with people with a high household income, who said they regularly consumed the news media and had an interest in public policy issues.

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