A Trust Exercise

By: Sebastian Faura

In recent times, the trustworthiness of the media has come into question, notably any print or digital news sources. Due to the overall worldwide turmoil and the increasing amount of news with unfounded or false claims, the public has become arguably more skeptical than ever before. As a result of this, many media outlets and companies are making an active effort to win the trust of the public again.

In the dire circumstances of having even the sources of information come into question, companies have taken measures to listen to the public more. PR giant Edelman, for example, has run what they label as a “Trust Barometer” for the past few years now, gauging the overall trust the public has in the various media channels of the world. Their assessment for 2017 is currently that the public’s association with the media is distant, not only caused by misinformation, but the mixed signals given to the public by the most popular topic currently in the news: The administration.

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The Edelman Trust Barometer. Source: Edelman.com

Government tends to be the established foundation of trustworthiness in the news, and as a result tend to be the most solid information, albeit at times lagging behind dedicated news sources. However, the figureheads of the current administration have been contradicting each other in a serious way. Sean Spicer, Press Secretary for the White House and Kellyanne Conway, Counselor to the President have had conflicting opinions of the recently-resigned Mike Flynn. The polarized verdicts of these two members of the Presidential Cabinet lead to an image of uncertainty from the White House, eroding the public’s trust in the administration even further.

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Kellyanne Conway, Counselor to the President. Source: CNN.com

To further make matters worse, the president is currently in conflict with the press, publicly attacking multiple news sources, though unnamed, directs unwarranted and unfounded accusations against otherwise usually trustworthy sources of news.

 

Wilkie, Christina. “Trump Attacks ‘Out Of Control’ Media In Chaotic Press Conference.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 16 Feb. 2017. Web. 17 Feb. 2017.

Blake, Aaron. “Analysis | Kellyanne Conway and Sean Spicer Have Their Own ‘alternative Facts’ on Flynn’s Resignation.” The Washington Post. WP Company, 14 Feb. 2017. Web. 17 Feb. 2017.

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