The same discernment manifests itself explicitly on social media. Of all households, 17% say they now trust social media less than they did before the COVID-19 crisis. Yet in the younger age group this number is once against highest at 24%.
Tackling fake news is a priority for news consumers
During this current crisis, the opportunity for all news outlets and for social media in particular, is to establish themselves as trustworthy and credible. By doing so, they will attract the largest audiences and likely retain them after the crisis has passed. To achieve this, news outlets need to double down on efforts to combat fake news.
In recent weeks, and as evidenced in the research, the rolling news and constant updates create a heightened scepticism amongst a large minority about news and information posted online.
Two thirds of consumers (67%) believe social media platforms have a chance to do more to police fake news and should be taking action. From a trust perspective, it will be reassuring that so many consumers feel social media can do more self-policing. Social media platforms not only have the opportunity to do more but, as the survey implies, they have an opportunity to be more transparent about what they are already doing.
In the minds of the majority of consumers, fake news is a very real issue. If social media companies are not transparent or credible in their efforts, there is a backstop option. Over half of consumers (52%) believe some of the responsibility for combating fake news, lies with regulators. They agree the government should take action. Again, younger audiences over-index with 57% believing the government should do more.