News Media Trust and News Consumption: Factors Related to Trust in News in 35 Countries
The changes in how people consume news and the emergence of digital and distributed news sources call for a reexamination of the relationship between news use and trust in news. Previous research had suggested that alternative news use is correlated with lower levels of trust in news, whereas mainstream news use is correlated with higher levels of trust in news. Our research, based on a survey of news users in 35 countries, shows that using either mainstream or alternative news sources is associated with higher levels of trust in news. However, we find that using social media as a main source of news is correlated with lower levels of trust in news. When looking at country effects, we find that systemic factors such as the levels of press freedom or the audience share of the public service broadcaster in a country are not significantly correlated with trust in news.