Report: Americans Vote PBS Most Trusted National Institution

ARLINGTON, VA.—CNN may label itself as “the most trusted name in news,” but the American people have spoken and for the 15th year in a row, PBS comes out on top as the most trusted national institution. PBS led all other sectors of media and government that were included in the annual ranking, including digital platforms, commercial cable and broadcast television, courts of law, newspapers and social media.

The annual survey showed that 78 percent of respondents found that local PBS member stations provided an excellent value to their communities. PBS and its member stations came in second, only behind military defense, in value for taxpayer dollars as 65 percent of respondents labeled it as a “good” or “excellent” value.

Parents rated PBS Kids the best educational media brand for children and that it was the top provider of content that helps prepare children for success in school and models positive social and emotional behaviors. PBS Kids also outperformed other providers with digital games and mobile apps.

Federal funding for public media, which amounts annually to $1.35 per citizen, goes directly to local stations and helps sustain those rural and underserved areas, according to the press release.

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“For 15 years running, research has shown that PBS and our member stations have earned the trust of the American public and are succeeding in providing children with programming and services to help them succeed in school and life,” said Paula Kerger, PBS president and CEO. “In a time when trust in the media has come into question, we are proud that PBS and our member stations remain unmatched in trust and value to our nation.”

Marketing & Research Resources Inc. conducted the national online poll in January 2018.