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The term media generally refers to the different ways of communication. Written sources were the earliest forms of mass communication. Many forms of media are employed to deliver messages to the masses and the notable among them are the magazines, newspaper, radio, television, video, internet and mobile phones. The radio, T.V. and video came into being at the end of the first half of the last century.
Over the years, major changes have been witnessed in the field of communication especially with the entrance of computers in mid 1950,s which gradually ushered in communication using the internet, blogs and podcasts. It is my view that in this 21st century, for anyone wishing to communicate a message to a large number of people, one should consider the recent social news networks like facebook, twitter amongst others.
This questionnaire is trying to address the issue of media trust; ‘Which media do you trust to give your accurate truthful unbiased current affair?’ The various sources of media that we have today continue to face criticism as researchers and the general public has lost trust in most if not all of them. Most news flushes contains lies created to promote certain products.
However, the level of trust among different people varies depending on several factors the most relevant being whether the source of the news is either local or international (Perez-Pena 16). In most cases, international news receives much attention and is more trusted than local news which tends to hind some facts.
Locally, Many viewers of television consider whether the TV station is owned by the government or not. This questionnaire is aimed at finding the degree of truthfulness that television, radio, internet and the news paper receives from the general public.
Television, internet, radio and Newspaper enjoy equal trust among the users.
Television, internet, radio and the newspaper do not enjoy equal trust among their users.
Questionnaires organized into 10 different questions were randomly distributed and administered to 15 respondents of different ages, gender and nationality who then filled and returned it. Notes were taken on the respondents reactions on the questionnaire’s general format and to given questions. Those with difficulty in answering different questions were given assistance.
The participants were informed that personal details would remain private and that they had an option to either include their name or leave it while filling the questionnaire. Information on those who refused to fill the forms and of those who were unsuitable was also presented and discussed (Boynton 1)
According this survey the number of females and males was equal while 37.5% were young people of between 18 and 25 years. Those between the age of 26 and 33 years contributed 27% and those above 33 years were also 37.5%.
The participants interviewed were from South Africa, Australia, Sudan, France, Malaysia and Canada. The findings showed that the demand for news was very high among all these nationalities. 50% of those interviewed watch TV, 25% read Newspaper, 19% listen to the radio while only 6% get their news article from the internet.
Asked what type of news they follow, majority said social news (44%), Sports news was only followed by 19% with political news having a following of 38%.Three-quarters of the respondents agreed that what was reported was true while a quarter of them didn’t trust what was reported. 68% of the respondents showed that they followed the news from their houses, 19% in the car and 13% at work.
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Only 75% believed that the information received was important in their lives, 25% opposed and reported that it wasn’t. Of those above 33 years, Two-thirds followed political news and the rest concentrated on social information. Half of the people of between 26-33 years were attracted to social reports with political and sport reports being followed by 25% each.
Only 17% of those below 26 years cared about political reports, majority (50%) were good at tracking social news and 33% were attracted to sports news.
More people below 25 years followed sports news. Slightly less than 7% of those interviewed relied on more than one source of information according to this report and more so the internet. In general, it was shown that the trust in media was increasing and that was indeed high across all ages. Young people have also been proved to be more willing to get information from online.
This report indicated that T.V. received the highest following (50%) closely trailed by newspaper (25%), radio at (19%) and lastly the internet (6%) in that order. Online sources appeared to be gaining ground because the customary sources were losing theirs. The findings also showed that media trust was a record high in developing countries when compared to more developed ones (Perez-Pena 22).
In summary, research by different groups over the years has shown that faith in news media declined from the 1980s to the ’90s (Pew surveys 1) and then remained constant for a few years (BBC/Reuters/Media Center Poll 1) The pew survey of 2009 showed that 63 percent of those interviewed mentioned that news items were inaccurate and that almost 30percent believed that the news were true.
It has also been shown that TV stations do the most followed news overall with over 50 percent trusting it (BBC/Reuters/Media Center Poll 1). Newspaper followed while public radio ranked third. The internet was ranked last thus showing the alternative hypothesis to be held true.
I would like to recommend a varied approach to the various news sources as proved by these surveys. Various methods of showing whether a source is telling the truth or not should be applied and these more often depends on one’s feeling. If you think that the information you are receiving is not true, it is recommends that you switch to a more trustworthy source (the BBC/Reuters/Media centre poll 1).
I would also recommend international news sources e.g. international TV, satellite TV and even international radio as these give news articles that are less prone to interference to fit special interests. Because sometimes corporate news cannot be trusted as it is tailored to fit the corporate welfare, one should consider other more private sites that deliver truest news from the speaker’s mouth.
Such sites report on what is true as it is posted by the person involved and therefore truer. Some websites such as wikipedia are more trusted because it is authored by many people and therefore a lie is removed almost immediately. Thus it can be seen that whether a news article is true or not depends on where you got it and your own intuition.
Boynton M. Petra. Hands-on guide to questionnaire research, Administering, analyzing, and reporting your questionnaire, 2004. Web.
Perez-Pena Richard, Trust in News Media Falls to New Low in Pew Survey, New York Times. 2009. Web.