Statista, the information/research company, has collated findings of YouGov polling which aimed to discover where in the world trust in media coverage of the coronavirus pandemic is highest and lowest. The overall results are summarised in the chart below.
Source of graphic: Statista (https://www.statista.com/chart/21779/trust-in-coronavirus-media-coverage- worldwide/ )
Now it has to be borne in mind that the media landscape in diﬀerent countries and cultures varies considerably. However, it is argued that comparison of levels of trust in media coverage amongst democratic countries with a ‘free press’ is possible and credible.
In Germany, 54 percent of those polled trust the media’s reporting on the pandemic compared to 50 percent in Spain, 38 percent in Italy and just 26 percent in France.
The article points to the “distinct lack of trust in Covid-19 reporting in the UK, at 31 percent” before going on to oﬀer this (odd?) opinion – especially the first sentence:
“… a distinct lack of trust in COVID-19 reporting in the UK which is hardly surprising given that the country, and its media in particular, remain bitterly divided by Brexit. The situation hasn’t been helped by the UK’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic which has resulted in 250,000 confirmed cases and over 35,000 deaths as of May 20 which has seen a mere 31 percent of people trust COVID-19 coverage.”
It almost reads as an attempt to excuse the media from a responsibility for any causal link to the public’s lack of trust! They should have asked more folk in Scotland!
The results of a longitudinal opinion survey from the same source in the graph below shows the more pronounced downward trend over time in satisfaction with the media’s response to Covid-19 in the UK in contrast to Germany and the USA.
Source of graph: Statista (https://www.statista.com/statistics/1107659/satisfaction-with-the-media-s- response-to-the-covid-19-pandemic/)
Perhaps the wider UK public is catching on to what many of us in Scotland have known for some time.
‘Trustworthy media’? Aye right!
Ed: A Survation poll on 16-23 April found that 51% trusted the BBC to provide them with information about Covid-19 but in the breakdown data it emerged that low trust was most common among Scots at 38% compared to only 14% in London and 11% in Northern Ireland: