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ABC, SBS lead most trusted news.

Reuters Institute finds Australians still trust public broadcasters over commercial TV news.

ABC and SBS lead the most trusted news brands in Australia according to a global news survey by Reuters Institute.

Seven News led in the commercial TV news battle just ahead of Nine News. 10 News did not rate a mention in the Brand Trust area, but was fourth in the overall audience reach.

Online (incl. social media) was the most popular source of news at 76% followed by TV (63%), Print (52%) and Social Media (25%).

TV news remains strong and steady and continues to be a significant source of news, especially for the COVID-19 and bushfire crises while newspapers continue to fall, and social media stagnate. Online, increasing numbers of Australians are using their mobile phones to access news, widening the gap between mobiles and computers.

This year’s findings need to be seen through the prism of the bushfire crisis that was ongoing when this survey was taken. Trust in news and trust in news I use dropped over the past 12 months and the number of people who say they do not trust the news also rose. The fall is bigger among people who rely mainly on traditional news compared to those who rely mainly on online news.

14% pay for Online news.

17 Responses

  1. I think it interesting that the least trusted and among the most untrusted news sources are the news agencies often associated with leaning heavily to the left or (mostly) to the right side of politics.

    Whatever happened to news sources providing a ‘balanced’ report/view on the news rather than being a public relations firm for their side of politics. It is getting so tiresome that so many events are getting couched in terms of what side of politics are followed. In the US, apparently CV-19 is clever enough to target Dems rather than GoPs. It is so very often black and white views and opinions – whatever happened to grey where in reality most issues and resolutions lie.

  2. Maybe I’m the only one that thinks this way but I’m not sure what ‘trust’ means in this context. I watch ABC News weeknights and for a change on Sundays I watch Channel 7 news. I recognise the difference between the two, Seven is the ‘tabloid’ news, so to speak. However, both broadcast essentially the same news albeit in different styles. I don’t ‘trust’ one more than the other. And if I’m in any doubt or curious about any news story from either channel, I pick my tablet and get the story from a variety of sources.

      1. LOL You are talking about morning TV news! I maintain that both news channels broadcast the essentially same news, but neither broadcast all the news. Best way I can explain it is compare news.com.au and The Guardian news apps. Selection of news articles is based on readership demographics. As far as ‘trusting’ ABC News, I do have hard time when the story starts off with “According to a recent study” or “According to a recent survey”

      2. Also, I did classify Seven as “tabloid” news. Nine and Ten are the same. More inane celebrity news, and yes cats caught in a tree and the heart warming rescue by our amazing first responders and news stories that are sponsored (LOL). I can recognise what I’m watching so therefore instead of ‘trust’ I would call it ‘preference’.

  3. Not sure how many people were surveyed as it’s very different to the ratings which show on the South Eastern side of Australia people trust 9 News the most as they watch it more than any other news service in Australia. Yes 7 is ahead nationally and as a brand you could say they are trusted however they have a monopoly on Perth and Adelaide which makes it unfair to the national ratings system. Being from Melbourne it’s very simple judging by ratings 9 News Melbourne is the most trusted brand followed by 7 followed by ABC then 10 and then SBS. The ratings have to be the true marker for trust because people would not watch if they didn’t trust! 9 and 7 are still the top in news across the country as trusted sources and will remain as the ABC is unfairly left and being owned by the Government they should be whipped in to order and made to be diplomatic and centre on all issues. I think I’m…

    1. > different to the ratings <

      The research was conducted by YouGov using an online questionnaire.

      Online samples will tend to under-represent the consumption habits of people who are not online (typically older, less affluent, and with limited formal education). In this sense it is better to think of results as representative of online populations.

    2. The majority of markets are loyal to a long term newsreader so it makes sense that 7 News would dominate in Perth where the worlds longest serving news duo present. Everyone knows the name Rick & Sue here. The interesting thing will be what the audience does once they retire.

  4. BBC News is third highest in the list. How many people in Australia actually watch BBC News? It sounds to me that this “trust” is based on mythology rather than any actual interaction with the brand.

    1. It’s radio service is a large part of ABC News radio overnight and is available 24 hrs a day now as an sbs tv radio channel 303-tghe Beeb also contributes much to both local networks as segments and programs for current affairs and news.

  5. … actually the most interesting figure to come from this report is that the total weekly reach of the ABC across all platforms is only 41% (rather than the 50% claimed by the ABC itself) and yet the “trust” is 72% (rather than the 82% reported by Roy Morgan) … so that means that there seems to be an awful lot of people who “trust” the ABC without ever actually watching, listening to or reading what their so-called journalists have to say … maybe they trust Bluey …

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