Americans twice as likely to believe news organizations than social media

Associated Press | American Press Institute

No matter how old they are, people surveyed for a new study by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research and the American Press Institute were “more than twice as likely to express high levels of trust about what they learn directly from a news organization (43 percent say they trust it mostly or completely) as they are to trust what they discovered through social media.”

15 percent of those who get news through social media “say they have high levels of trust in information they get from that means of discovery,” the study says. 13 percent of people under 30 said social was their preferred source for news. 3 percent of all other age groups said the same thing.

The study has lots of other interesting findings about news consumption, among them that people change their behavior depending on what the news is.

For example, half of news consumers recalling a breaking news story they followed recently said they first heard about it on TV. Half of those people in turn said they actively tried to learn more about that breaking news story. At that point, however, more people turned to the Internet to follow the story than TV.

And TV is still the dominant medium for news: 87 percent of people surveyed get news from the big screen, 69 percent turn to laptops or desktops, 61 percent use print (immobile apps?) and 56 percent use a phone. Mobile users “are no more or less likely to use print publications, television, or radio to access the news,” the study says.

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