Fake News? Maybe Not, but Trust in Media Declines in South Korea - eMarketer

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Fake News? Maybe Not, but Trust in Media Declines in South Korea

Confidence in traditional media drops 16 points in five years

March 9, 2017 | Media

People in South Korea are losing trust in traditional media, according to a poll of internet users ages 18 and older on looking for news and information. The February 2017 report from Edelman found that 58% of respondents trusted traditional media in 2012, but only 42% felt the same in 2017.

Sources that Internet Users in South Korea Trust for News and Information, 2012 & 2017 (% of respondents)

Traditional media isn’t the only culprit. Internet users in South Korea are losing trust in all kinds of media and information sources. In fact, the only channel that has gained in trust since 2012 is search engines—up from 53% that year to 58 in 2017.

Online-only media has declined in trust from 45% to 41%, while just 38% of this year’s respondents say they trust social media, down from 42% in 2012.

Edelman also asked about trust in media as an institution. While 42% of internet users said they trusted media in 2012, that proportion had slipped to 40% by 2017.

South Korea is not alone in a falloff in media trust: Internet users in Japan trust media slightly less than they did in 2012 as well. According to Japan-specific data, Edelman found that in 2012, 48% of internet users in Japan trusted traditional media, while just 39% say they do in 2017.

But there are slight differences: social media trust in Japan has improved from 23% in 2012 to 27% in 2017, while—unlike in South Korea—trust in search engines remained largely static.

Ben Clague

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