Nearly seven in 10 Americans say they have “not very much” trust (29%) or “none at all” (39%) when it comes to mass media. This ties the lowest level recorded by Gallup, matching 2016.
The four in 10 Americans who completely lack confidence in the media is the highest on record, and 12 points higher than the 2016 reading, which came amid sharp criticism of the media from then-presidential candidate Donald Trump – making the current assessment of the media the grimmest in Gallup’s history.
Gallup first asked this question in 1972 and has tracked it nearly every year since 1997. Trust ranged from 68% to 72% in three readings in the 1970s, and though it had declined by the late 1990s, it remained at the majority level until 2004, when it fell to 44%. After rebounding slightly to 50% in 2005, it has not risen above 47% since.
Democrats, who have historically rated the media more favorably, saw a significant decline in trust – falling 12 points over the past year, to 58%. Only 11% of Republicans and 29% of independents said they trust the media.