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trust in news

The importance of trust

“The global pandemic has awakened more people to the value of accurate news and their own role in choosing it. The news industry must connect even more deeply to the principles of social responsibility at journalism’s heart and become the people’s trusted, responsible, and responsive ally. We must do so not just for philosophical reasons, but for our very survival”, a report from the International News Media Association (INMA) says.

”The reinvention of news media’s business model can be significantly advanced by newsrooms that restore trust from audiences inundated by fake news and misinformation”.

“How News Brands Are Rebuilding Trust” is based on global research and case studies from The Trust Project, an international consortium of news organisations building standards of transparency and working with tech platforms to affirm and amplify journalism’s commitment to transparency, accuracy, inclusion, and fairness.

Rebuilding trust must be intentional and executed with urgency, the report says. At a time when media companies around the world are focused on subscription revenue, research shows audiences will not pay for that which they do not trust.

Report author and Trust Project founder, Sally Lehrman, refers to research from the recent Edelman Trust Barometer, which shows — in light of the global pandemic and the US presidential election — that trust for mainstream news companies is falling.

The INMA report looks at four steps necessary for newsrooms as they rebuild trust:

  • Acknowledge change is needed.
  • Strengthen standards and policies.
  • Heighten transparency.
  • Engage.


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