CPTV Announces PBS and Member Stations Are Named #1 in Public Trust and an “Excellent” Use of Tax Dollars for Ninth Consecutive Year
National Research Also Confirms PBS KIDS as the Most Educational TV/Media Brand and the Safest On-Air and Online Destination for Children
Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) President & CEO Jerry Franklin has announced that once again national research has confirmed that PBS and PBS stations are the most trusted institution and is considered an “excellent” use of tax dollars – for the ninth consecutive year1. PBS and PBS stations were also called the most fair network for news and public affairs. In addition, PBS KIDS was named the most educational TV/media brand, the safest destination for children to watch television or visit online and the top provider of content that helps children build reading and math skills.3
The research was conducted in January and February 2012 by the independent, non-partisan research companies Harris Interactive and ORC Online Caravan. Each year, PBS commissions research to measure its performance and value as judged by its most important stakeholder – the American public.
“It’s always so rewarding to be recognized for the mission and value of the work we do,” said Franklin. “The public’s trust and the longevity of holding that trust are paramount to our goal of bringing the best television programming to the citizens of Connecticut. These findings further exemplify the broad reach and scope of our reputation.”
PBS Ranks #1 in Public Trust – Twice the Level of Trust Than Courts of Law
More than 3 in 4 people trust PBS (76% “trust a great deal” or “trust somewhat”). The 2012 study marks the ninth time in a row that PBS was called the nation’s most-trusted institution. The study found that respondents had twice the level of trust in PBS (26% “trust a great deal”) over the nearest institution, Courts of Law (13% “trust a great deal”).1
PBS Considered Top Use of Tax Dollars
· Only military defense outranked PBS as the best value for the American tax dollar. Over two-thirds of those polled (64%) called PBS an “excellent” (20%) or “good” (44%) use of their tax dollars. Military defense was described as “excellent” or “good” by 73% (31% “excellent” or 42% “good”).
· Nearly 3 in 4 participants (74%) believe federal funding for PBS is money well spent.3
PBS Named the Most Fair Network
· 4 in 10 respondents (40%) called PBS’ news coverage, investigations and discussions of issues “mostly fair” (when asked to choose among “liberal,” “mostly fair” and “conservative”). PBS outscored all other sources in the “mostly fair” category, including ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, MSNBC and FOX News. 2
· Less than one-third (32%) described PBS as “liberal.” Every other source besides FOX News was considered more liberal than PBS.2
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PBS Leads in Addressing Important Issues
PBS received high marks for the effectiveness of its programming for children and adults in terms of handling important topics. A majority of respondents believed PBS programming addressed key subjects – from providing access to the arts and improving literacy to providing access to a variety of viewpoints either “very well” or “well.”
· Provide people access to arts and culture – 67%
· Promote an understanding of American history – 62%
· Inform people of America’s ethnic and cultural diversity – 60%
· Promote an understanding of science and technology – 60%
· Improve literacy – 59%
· Provide access to a variety of viewpoints – 54%
· Inform people of important political and social issues – 51%
· Inform people about health issues – 51%
PBS KIDS Called #1 Educational TV/Media Brand, Top Builder of Critical Skills, and Safest
On-Air and Online Destination
· A strong majority – 62% – named PBS KIDS the most educational TV/media brand. The second most highly rated was Disney, which was considered most educational by 13%.2
· 8 in 10 people (80%) agreed “strongly or somewhat” that “PBS helps prepare children for success in school and life.” This statement was equated with cable television and commercial broadcast television by 37% and 34% of participants, respectively.3
· Eighty-four percent (84%) agreed “strongly or somewhat” that PBS “helps children improve their reading and math skills.” Cable and commercial broadcast television received this rating from 40% and 30% of respondents, respectively.3
· Eighty-eight percent (88%) agreed “strongly or somewhat” that PBS “is a trusted and safe place for children to watch television.” Only 34% and 36% of respondents agreed with this statement regarding cable and commercial broadcast television, respectively.3
· Eight-five percent (85%) agreed “strongly or somewhat” that PBS “is a trusted and safe place for children to visit online,” while this statement was attributed to cable television and commercial broadcasters by only 31% and 34% of the sample, respectively.3
· Eighty-three percent (83%) agreed “strongly or somewhat” that PBS is “the innovator” in children’s educational media. 37% percent and 27% of participants also applied this statement to cable and commercial broadcast television, respectively.
PBS’ purpose is to educate, inform and inspire with essential non-commercial programming that enlarges people's sense of the world. Public television fulfills its essential mission to the American public, providing trusted content that is uniquely different from commercial broadcasting, treating its audiences as citizens, not simply consumers.
Full results are available at http://to.pbs.org/most-trusted-2012.
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1 “Trust Tracker” study was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of PBS from January 20- 24, 2012 among 2,500 adults ages 18 and older; Opinion Research omnibus survey, March 2011; Roper Public Opinion Poll, 2004-2010.
2 The supplemental survey to the “Trust Tracker” study conducted online within the United States by ORC International on behalf of PBS from January 12-15 2012, among 1,027 adults ages 18 and older.
3 The “Importance” study survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of PBS from January 23-25, 2012 among 2,217 adults ages 18 and older and also from February 15-17, 2012 among 2,500 adults ages 18 and older.
For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Jan McNamara, PBS Corporate Communications, [email protected] or 703-739-5028.