Monmouth poll: Most believe ‘fake news’ is rampant, but trust media more than president

 (Big Stock photo)

(Big Stock photo)

A Monmouth University poll finds most Americans believe “fake news” is widespread, but they have more confidence in the media than the information that comes from President Donald Trump.

The public feels there’s erroneous information everywhere, said poll director Patrick Murray, referring to the modern phenomenon of deliberate falsehoods or fiction masked as news circulating on the internet.

“Eighty percent say that news websites online will report ‘fake news,’ and about 63 percent say that our traditional sources like TV and newspapers will from time to time report ‘fake news.’ In most cases they say when they do it, it’s to push an agenda.”

A majority of those surveyed said they’re more likely to trust what major media outlets report than what the president says.

“For example, against ABC News, which other polls have placed at the top of credibility in terms of public trust, we find that 53 percent think that ABC is more trustworthy versus 28 percent who say the information that comes from Donald Trump is more trustworthy,” Murray said.

But there are partisan differences. Democrats give a credibility edge to mainstream media, while Republicans say if it’s Trump versus the media, then Trump is right.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.