The Media Insight Project

The Media Insight Project is a collaboration of the American Press Institute (API) and The AP‑NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, with the objective of conducting high‑quality, innovative research meant to inform the news industry and the public about various important issues facing journalism and the news business.

The Media Insight Project brings together the expertise of both organizations and their respective partners, and involves collaborations among key staff at API, NORC at the University of Chicago, and The Associated Press.

Its studies are directed and funded primarily by API and are designed and conducted in partnership between the organizations.

The individual authors, researchers and contributors for each study are cited in the studies’ methodology sections.

About The American Press Institute
The American Press Institute (API) advances an innovative and sustainable local news industry by helping publishers understand and engage audiences, grow revenue, improve public‑service journalism, and succeed at organizational change. API is a national 501©3 nonprofit educational organization affiliated with the News Media Alliance. It works with and draws on the best ideas from technology, business, and publishing. Read more here

About The Associated Press‑NORC Center For Public Affairs Research
The AP‑NORC Center for Public Affairs Research taps into the power of social science research and the highest‑quality journalism to bring key information to people across the nation and throughout the world.

The Associated Press (AP) is the world’s essential news organization, bringing fast, unbiased news to all media platforms and formats.

NORC at the University of Chicago is one of the oldest and most respected, independent research institutions in the world.

The two organizations have established The AP‑NORC Center for Public Affairs Research to conduct, analyze, and distribute social science research in the public interest on newsworthy topics, and to use the power of journalism to tell the stories that research reveals.

The founding principles of The AP‑NORC Center include a mandate to preserve carefully and protect the scientific integrity and objectivity of NORC and the journalistic independence of AP. All work conducted by the Center conforms to the highest levels of scientific integrity to prevent any real or perceived bias in the research. All of the work of the Center is subject to review by its advisory committee to help ensure it meets these standards. The Center will publicize the results of all studies and make all datasets and study documentation available to scholars and the public.

Americans and the News Media: What they do — and don’t — understand about each other

This research was conducted by the Media Insight Project — an initiative of the American Press Institute and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research A key factor in the erosion of Americans’ trust of their news media is a failure to communicate — we have a public that doesn’t fully understand how journalists […]

What Americans know, and don’t, about how journalism works

People are strikingly unfamiliar with terms that many journalists use, probably without thinking — such as the difference between an editorial and a news story, what the term “attribution” means, or what an op‑ed is. Consider a few numbers. Fully 50 percent of the public say they are only a little familiar with the term […]

How does personal experience with news affect a person’s views?

The extent of personal experience a person has with journalism — including being covered or interviewed in the news, or having some education in journalism themselves — impacts how well a person understands news processes and concepts. We explored several ways adults may have had personal experiences with journalism. We then examined how those experiences […]

Levels of trust and how Americans feel about the fairness and accuracy of the press

Trust in the media overall has declined in the last year, but people’s trust in their favorite news outlet has grown. If we look at trust in the most general way, just under half (44 percent of adults) say their trust in the news has decreased in the last year. Fully 19 percent say it […]

How Americans describe their news consumption behaviors

Most Americans describe themselves as active news consumers. Sixty‑three percent report that they seek out news and information. Far fewer, 37 percent, say they mostly bump into news as they do other things or hear about it from others. Americans also report consuming news and information frequently. By a large majority, nearly two‑thirds of adults […]

Are newspaper subscribers more knowledgeable or approving of the news media?

Newspaper subscribers hold more positive views of many specific types of media — and have an easier time deciphering news from opinion — than do non-subscribers. Overall, 29 percent of Americans subscribe to a print or digital version of a newspaper. These subscribers tend to have more positive views than non‑subscribers on many components of […]

How much Republicans and Democrats trust or understand the news media

It should come as no surprise today that the partisan divide over news is a troubling and significant issue as the United States comes to grips with a polarized political landscape. The data, above, about general differences in many ways offer a path beyond those differences via efforts to increase clarity and transparency, among others. […]

Download the report or topline results for ‘Americans and the News Media’

For printing and offline viewing, a PDF version of this report and the topline survey results of the public survey and the journalists survey are available for download.

What the public expects from the press (and what journalists think)

The public and journalists expect the same things from the news media. The public just doesn’t think it’s getting it. What do people want from journalists? Above all, the public says it wants accuracy — for the media to verify and get the facts right. Fully 87 percent rank that as extremely or very important, […]

Methodology for ‘Americans and the News Media’

This study was conducted by the Media Insight Project, an initiative of the American Press Institute (API) and The Associated Press‑NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The study was funded by API. Staff from API and The AP‑NORC Center collaborated on all aspects of the study. General Public Survey The survey was conducted from March […]