Monday 10 May 2010

Regional TV and local press top poll for providing unbiased information on local authorities

Regional TV news (40 per cent) and local newspapers (36 per cent) are the top two sources of information trusted to provide unbiased information about the local council or other local public bodies, according to a poll commissioned by the Newspaper Society to mark the start of Local Newspaper Week.
They were far ahead of other sources such as council publications (20 per cent) or council websites (23 per cent), Among frequent readers, local newspapers (42 per cent) are the most trusted source of unbiased information ahead of regional TV news (36 per cent).
Eighty-five per cent of local newspaper readers in Britain say it is important that their local paper keeps them informed about local council issues, the study by TNS-RI Omnibus has revealed.
And nearly two-thirds of readers (63 per cent) are happy with the amount of information about their local council or other public bodies in their local newspaper or its website.
Asked who they would contact first if they wanted to raise awareness of a local issue or problem, 60 per cent said local newspapers, 15 per cent cited council publications and 11 per cent said local radio stations.
National newspapers were chosen by only six per cent and regional TV news stations by five per cent.
NS communications director Lynne Anderson said: “Local newspapers are by far the most popular media source for people who want to raise awareness of an issue or problem and as such they perform a unique role in upholding democracy which begins at a local level.”

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