|We don’t trust the media and so we do not believe it tells us the truth. So why do we keep on reading, listening, viewing and scrolling?
Journalists won’t like this, but it’s because there is nothing else.
So what is the most trusted media in the US? Scarily, it’s The Weather Channel. You’ve read it right. Weather forecasters are always getting it wrong – it’s the nature of their business, yet they are most trusted medium in the US.*
And it’s the only one of two channels that the Republicans trust, the other one is Fox News. For those of you with a more-liberal minded view (i.e., almost all Europeans and East and West Coast Americans), this will come as a shock. Fox is also Donald Trump’s 24-hour channel – he wants to know what his core voters are thinking and Fox News is where he’ll find it.
On the other hand, the New York Post is strongly anti-Trump. When he announced his candidature for President, the paper ran the story on page 26 with the headline: ‘Florida Man Makes Announcement.’
It is rather ironic that the WSJ and the NY Post are both owned by the Murdoch empire which sort of gives lie to the accusation that old Rupert is politically biased. No. He’s a businessman.
And, of course, for Democrats, The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal are rated highly as trustworthy by Democrats and not by Republicans.
Naturally, we tend to gravitate and trust the media which most reflects our own personal views. This is really dangerous. It is far better to use a medium that challenges and disagrees with your views even if it raises your blood pressure.
I did an experiment with two interns: one a member of the Labour Party and the other from the Conservatives. I gave the former the Daily Mail, which is right-wing and the Conservative got The Guardian which leans left.
They both came to the same conclusion that their respective papers were ‘full of lies’.
What do I read? Almost everything – but then that’s my business.
Have a good week.
*A poll conducted by YouGov and The Economist, April 2023