Edelman Australia finds trust in national media continues to fall

The 2022 Edelman Australia Trust Barometer has found that trust in media fell by 8 points to 43%, making it the only institution examined by the survey that is distrusted by a majority of the population.

It is a continuation of a trend from the 2021 Trust Barometer, which revealed that no media source was trusted for news and information by Australians.

(Click to enlarge)

The barometer was supported by research from Edelman Data & Intelligence, consisting of 30-minute online interviews from 1 November to 24 November 2021.

The Trust Barometer further found that media, as well as government, was seen as more divisive than unifying. Contrastingly, businesses and NGOs were found to be more unifying.

(Click to enlarge)

Trust in every type of media examined was found to have fallen: traditional media down five points (48%), search engines down four points (47%), owned media down five points (33%) and social media down eight points (8%).

Business was found to be the only institution that was perceived as both competent and ethical.

The Trust Barometer further found that a significant portion of Australians wished businesses to speak more on societal issues, although not a majority, at 44%.

(Click to enlarge)

For CEOs, Australians expect CEOs to inform conversations around subjects specifically related to jobs and the economy (72%), wage inequality (72%), technology and automation (68%), prejudice and discrimination (64%) and climate change (61%). Edelman’s media release noted: “However, CEOs are expected to stay out of politics.”

Michelle Hutton, CEO Australia and vice chair of Asia Pacific, Edelman said: “In the year ahead, transparency and social action will be the currency with which business will earn the trust of their people and the public. Expectations are high and Aussies are looking to their leaders – and here lies the opportunity for business. 2022 must be the year of action; business has a larger-than-ever mandate to use its resources and scale to create value beyond the balance sheet. Many have declared bold ambitions in recent years, and society is now watching closely to see who will deliver. As firms work to create value for society, they have an opportunity to build trust with stakeholders along the way through operational transparency and authentic communication.”


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.