Arts & Entertainment and Nonprofits

PBS earns 'most trusted' status 10 years in a row

March 4, 2013
TAGS PBS / public / trust / TV
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PBS station WGVU TV looks back at 40 years on the air
WGVU TV gave area students hands-on access to studio equipment during the Be a Broadcaster Camp. Photo via fb.com
An annual national survey conducted over the last 10 years has consistently confirmed that PBS and its member stations are ranked first in trust among nationally known institutions and are considered an “excellent” use of tax dollars by the American public.

The latest survey, conducted in January 2013 by non-partisan research firm ORC International, also found that PBS is considered the “most fair” network for news and public affairs, again for the 10th year in a row.

Additionally, 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 learn reading, math and essential skills, according to the study.

“WGVU Public Media, together with PBS, is America's largest stage for the arts and America's largest classroom for education,” said Michael T. Walenta, WGVU Public Media general manager. “For an entire decade, America has spoken and declared PBS and WGVU are second only to defense of our great nation, when it comes to the value received for their federal investment. Not bad for an annual admission price of $1.35 per person.”

Research highlights include:

  • PBS ranks first in public trust at nearly twice the level of trust than courts of law, which ranked second
  • Only military defense outranked PBS as the best value for the American tax dollar
  • More than four in 10 respondents named PBS KIDS the most educational TV/media brand
  • Eighty-six percent agreed “strongly or somewhat” that PBS “helps children improve their reading and math skills”
  • Eighty-one percent agreed “strongly or somewhat” that PBS is “the innovator” in children’s educational media

The research firm conducted the survey by phone, contacting 1,014 adults age 18 and older. The sample included 512 men and 502 women.

Full survey results can be found at PBS.org.

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