Trustworthiness of media in decline - 60% of Germans distrust their media

TV lies

According to recent survey for the large German newspaper DIE ZEIT, 60% of Germans distrust their media. This is of no surprise to those, who do not blindly follow news anchormen and anchorwomen, but also ask questions.

“Distrust is huge, if it comes to media - and that mistrust is even on the rise”. A recent survey by infratest dimap, a large german poll company, can be summarized by that preceding statement. The mentioned survey was paid for by one of the largest German newspapers DIE ZEIT.

The answers given by the people who were asked by infratest dimap, led to the conclusion, that 53% only had a little trust in main stream media and 7% had no trust in main stream media at all. About 40% stated, that they had a good amount or large trust in media.

From all the interviewees, 25% mentioned that their trust decreased during the past years.

Manipulation, one-sidedness and blunder as main criticism

As DIE ZEIT reports, the survey points out that the mainly criticized items were accusation of willful manipulation (27%), lopsidedness (20%) and simple blunder (15%). Approximately 10% also criticized the media’s lack of independence.

This huge extent of distrust in the main stream meadia’s work came to light for the first time in december 2014, during the height of the ukraine crisis. In december 2014, infratest dimap also conducted a survey and came to the conclusion that

“All in all, the trust in media is as bad as it hasn’t been quite some time. Compared to april 2012, where still 40% of the interviewees had good or huge trust in media, now in december 2014 only 29% tend to do so.”

TV and newspapers still leading media

Despite the sharp decline in mainstream media trust, the leading news sources still are TV and print media, as well as radio programmes. The Internet, however, was not the dominant medium among the interviewed citizens.

It has to be noted, that such surveys usually are performed via telephone, especially land line phones. This interesting fact gives some insight into the age- and social structure of interviewees. Despite such poll companies claiming to deliver statistically significant and unbiased results, it’s an interesting detail to know that landline phones are nowadays quite rare. They are mainly to be found for people at the age of 45 and above.

With that information in mind, one wonders, how large the percentage of distrusting citizens might really be.

However, we at The European Guardian are proud to be part of the non-mainstream media and hope to deliver you the news you need to know.

We have an agenda - but we vouch for it.


ZEIT, Telepolis

About the Author

Frederic Jahnsson

German Editor-in-Chief

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