Americans Are Reportedly Losing Faith In National News Media, Tech Companies

White House Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway talks to reporters outside of the West Wing July 16, 2019 in Washington, DC.
Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

In just a few years, Americans’ opinion of tech companies and the news media has dropped dramatically, according to a new poll from Pew Research. Negative views of technology giants and their impact on the country have nearly doubled in four years, while the positive perception of the national news media has dropped 6 percent among Democrats in the past two years.

Over the past four years, the percent of people who hold a positive view of technology companies has tanked from 71 percent to 50 percent. At the same time, the negative opinion of those companies has climbed, nearly doubling, from 17 percent to 33 percent.

The survey also asked participants about their opinions on the national news media, religious organizations, colleges and universities, labor unions, large corporations, and banks and other financial institutions.

In particular, the news media has a negative reputation among the public, with 64 percent saying that they have a negative view of the so-called fourth branch of government. Only 25 percent of people said that they had a positive view of the media.

The survey notes that responses tend to fall in line with political leanings, with a partisan divide over how people view the various institutions. This divide has become more pronounced since 2017.

“The new survey also finds that opinions about the effect of churches and religious organizations in the U.S. have become less positive – and more partisan – since 2017,” the report revealed. “Currently, 52% of Americans say churches and religious organizations are having a positive effect on the way things are going in the country, down from 59% two years ago.”

The impact of banks and large corporations on the United States is also largely viewed in a negative light, with an even split of 39 percent of people seeing banks as a positive and 39 percent seeing them as a negative. Large corporations were viewed negatively by 53 percent of people, while only 32 percent had a positive opinion. Here again, the opinions are divided by political leaning.

“Republicans and Democrats also have moved further apart in opinions about how banks and large corporations affect the country. Half of Republicans say banks and other financial institutions have a positive effect on the U.S., compared with just 27% of Democrats. Two years ago, the partisan gap was less pronounced (46% of Republicans, 33% of Democrats),” says the report.

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The view of labor unions has climbed over the past few years, going up from 43 percent in 2010 to 58 percent in 2019 among Democrats, and increasing from 22 percent to 35 percent for Republicans.