Fixing fake news—journalists and media platforms partner to regain trust

by | Jun 19, 2018 | Public Relations

Trust in traditional media has declined overall from 72 percent in 2016 to 50 percent this year, new research from PR and integrated creative network Ogilvy reveals.

The firm’s survey of news media pros also found that an overwhelming majority of journalists (68 percent) believe it is the responsibility of both the news industry and social media giants like Facebook to combat media “echo chambers.” 

Fixing fake news—journalists and media platforms partner to regain trust

These journalists clearly do not think the onus of interpreting news lies with the consumer

Only 24 percent of those surveyed believe it is the individual responsibility of consumers to diversify their news sources.

Ogilvy announced the findings of its 2018 Global Media Influence Survey at the Cannes Lions Festival, which revealed trust in traditional media as a source for news has declined 22 percent since 2016. The survey of over 350 journalists worldwide found that these shifts will likely lead to more collaborations between traditional and social media in the coming years, as both confront ongoing challenges to consumer trust.

Fixing fake news—journalists and media platforms partner to regain trust

Traditional news and social media must work together

“Traditional news outlets are alive and well, but their partnerships with social media will have to continue to evolve,” said Jennifer Risi, worldwide chief communications officer at Ogilvy, in a news release. “It is increasingly clear that traditional media will have to collaborate across channels, and those integrations with social media will be key to their ability to drive authentic, transparent communications going forward.”

This is the 5th edition of the annual survey of reporters and editors around the globe, conducted by Ogilvy Media Influence team members in 22 offices across North America, EMEA and Asia Pacific (APAC).

Fixing fake news—journalists and media platforms partner to regain trust

Additional key findings:

  • In North America, traditional media is followed by social as the most trusted news source at 17 percent, an increase from 12 percent in 2017. In EMEA and APAC, owned content such as company websites and press releases are the second most trusted at 34 percent and 24 percent, respectively, compared to 10 percent and 11 percent for social media.
  • The number of journalists expecting to see more collaboration between traditional and social media moving forward increased to 38 percent, up from 24 percent in 2017. This exceeds the belief that consumers will grow more willing to pay for their news from verified sources (26 percent).
  • Respondents in North America and EMEA believe social media giants bear the most responsibility for combatting media echo chambers (35 percent and 33 percent), while APAC journalists believe the news industry should rethink its for-profit business model (47% percent).
  • As traditional media continues to adapt, more than 6 in 10 journalists believe online news will surpass TV as the number one news source within the next 5 years. North American respondents believe it will take longer (3-5 years) than EMEA and APAC (1-2 years).
  • When asked to look five years ahead, journalists said they predict Artificial Intelligence will be the most adopted media innovation (51 percent) more so than augmented reality (37 percent).

Fixing fake news—journalists and media platforms partner to regain trust

Now in its fifth year, Ogilvy’s annual global media survey is quickly becoming an indispensable industry resource. Ogilvy will announce results from the second half of the survey later this summer.

The Media Influence team fielded a 10-question survey of 363 news media professionals across the North America, Asia Pacific and EMEA regions. The survey assessed new strategies for an increasingly digital world and focused on the sentiments of reporters, editors and producers who cover a vast range of topics, including national news, business and financial news, law and human resources news, as well as consumer trends, technology, entertainment, politics, healthcare, travel and multiethnic communities. The survey was conducted in April 2018 via phone and email by Ogilvy Media Influence staff members based in 22 offices across the globe.

Fixing fake news—journalists and media platforms partner to regain trust

Richard Carufel
Richard Carufel is editor of Bulldog Reporter and the Daily ’Dog, one of the web’s leading sources of PR and marketing communications news and opinions. He has been reporting on the PR and communications industry for over 17 years, and has interviewed hundreds of journalists and PR industry leaders. Reach him at richard.carufel@bulldogreporter.com; @BulldogReporter