Liberals, hold onto your pants!
A mere 16% of those polled deem CNN “very believable” while 22% claim that the network is “somewhat believable.” In the “very believable” category, that is even lower than MSNBC, which has been found by Pew Research to contain a frighteningly unsettling opinion-to-news-ratio. Fox News came in with 25% for both categories.
These new numbers from the Huffington Post and YouGov come from a poll of 1,000 individuals between April 19-20th, or during and immediately after the Boston Marathon attack and manhunt. During extensive coverage of the tragedy, Fox news drew the most viewers in all of cable. Fox also recently ended their 11th year for top ratings in news. Interestingly, Fox also came in highest for most trusted and least trusted earlier this year in February. So maybe it’s time for the Fox news haters to quiet down a bit.
To be fair, I must raise a couple of other points. Keep in mind that there is also a category that includes people who do not watch those specific networks. It could also be posited that those who watch Fox are more trusting of it while those who watch CNN are more skeptical. Regardless, CNN ranked lower in believability overall.
We are also seeing a decline in cable news viewership. The latest State of the Media report showed a very small increase in cable news growth in the past year, and even a decline in some. News websites are becoming more and more popular as well. The diversity of news outlets available also might cause one to reevaluate certain reports released by major cable outlets and question their believability.
The results also might have something to do with the fact that CNN made a couple of fairly big mistakes during the coverage of the attack (and in a couple of other high profile incidents). However, CNN was also not the only network or news outlet to make these mistakes. Notably, live coverage of events as complex as the Boston Marathon Bombing can be extremely difficult to cover accurately while also meeting the extreme demand for second by second updates. The New York Times’ David Carr provided insightful remarks regarding the tarnishing of the network.