Report: Australians confident in ability to spot fake news

Latest Ipsos and Trust Project report find majority of Australian adults are verifying the new sources they use are trustworthy, yet reliance on social media and free sources could be an issue

Just under nine out of 10 Australian adults are checking the news they read comes from trustworthy news sources and the majority of us think we’re good at spotting fake news, a new survey has found.

The latest Ipsos and Trust Project report, Trust Misplaced, found 88 per cent of Australian adults make sure the news they rely on comes from trustworthy news sources, 7 per cent more than the global average (88 per cent). Seventy-two per cent of us locally also believe we have easy access to trustworthy news sources, again higher than the global average of 64 per cent.

The survey also found 65 per cent of Australians are confident in their ability to spot ‘fake news’ but are less confident in their fellow citizens’ ability to do the same (29 per cent). And half of Australian respondents believe other countries target people in their country with disinformation, compared to the 46 per cent who think so globally.

In addition, the survey reported on which sources we’re accessing news from globally. It found nearly three quarters get news at least three times per week via TV, while 72 per cent do the same via social media. Six in 10 seek their news from news websites and news apps (61 per cent), 42 per cent do so via radio, and one in four are using printed magazines and newspapers.

In Australia, 75 per cent of adults say they only read news they can access for free, compared to the global average of 67 per cent. One in four Australians are willing to pay for news from sources they trust, compared to 27 per cent globally.

It’s this habit that Ipsos Australia public affairs deputy managing director, David Elliott, raised as one issue leading Australians to be more vulnerable to disinformation. He also said Australia’s more confident results combined with social media usage leave us “prone to those seeking to spread disinformation”.

Yet Ipsos global public affairs CEO, Darrell Bricker, said the idea trust is becoming increasingly subjective and one ruled by our emotions isn’t one substantiated by the group’s research.  

“We now speak our truth as opposed to the truth. At least that’s what we see reported and lamented by many commentators these days,” he commented. “But this isn’t what we see in our surveys. There continues to be points of public consensus on many issues based on a broad acceptance of what we see the truth to be.”

The Ipsos survey was done in two parts. The first canvassed nearly 19,000 adults globally across 29 countries between May and June, including about 1000 Australians aged 16-74, while the second survey around civic and social engagement was done from June -July across 27 countries and those aged 18-74.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia.

 

 

 

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