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Perceived Credibility of Mainstream Newspapers and Facebook
Unformatted Document Text:  Running Head: Credibility in Newspapers and Facebook 6 (Blake & Wyatt, 2002). Research suggests that perceived credibility of newspapers can be adversely affected by dubious journalistic practices, such as when readers believe journalists are overreliant on anonymous sources (Sternadori, 2009). Similarly, perceived credibility has declined in relation to the frequency and severity of errors by news sources (Maier, 2005). And yet despite the efforts by the Times and other elite news outlets, the concept of credible news has increasingly become something that is hard to define, particularly as advances such as Cable TV and the Internet have drastically increased the amount of information to disseminate. Clearly, the perceived credibility of mainstream news outlets is shifting. A 2007 Pew Research Center for the People and the Press poll to determine America’s most admired journalist showed that comedian Jon Stewart, host of The Daily Show, tied for fourth place with then CBS anchor Dan Rather and NBC anchors Tom Brokow and Brian Williams (The Pew Research Center, 2007). Credibility and the Internet Mainstream media outlets have floundered in the Internet age, particularly as newspapers have wrestled with issues such as whether to charge for online subscriptions and how to capitalize on the rapidly growing online advertising market (Miel & Faris, 2009). Yet, traditional gatekeeping authority has endured online. Online journalists have been found to be influenced by gatekeeping forces just like their counterparts in print (Cassidy, 2006). Perhaps one of the biggest changes in the online world has to do with the nature of the audience. McQuail writes that “there are large possibilities for change” in terms of the role of the audience, “especially in the direction of greater autonomy and equality in relation to sources and suppliers,” as the

Authors: Nynka, Andrew. and McCaffrey, Raymond.
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Running Head: Credibility in Newspapers and Facebook                      6 
 
 
(Blake & Wyatt, 2002). Research suggests that perceived credibility of newspapers can be 
adversely affected by dubious journalistic practices, such as when readers believe journalists are 
overreliant on anonymous sources (Sternadori, 2009). Similarly, perceived credibility has 
declined in relation to the frequency and severity of errors by news sources (Maier, 2005). 
     And yet despite the efforts by the Times and other elite news outlets, the concept of credible 
news has increasingly become something that is hard to define, particularly as advances such as 
Cable TV and the Internet have drastically increased the amount of information to disseminate.  
Clearly, the perceived credibility of mainstream news outlets is shifting. A 2007 Pew Research 
Center for the People and the Press poll to determine America’s most admired journalist showed 
that comedian Jon Stewart, host of The Daily Show, tied for fourth place with then CBS anchor 
Dan Rather and NBC anchors Tom Brokow and Brian Williams (The Pew Research Center, 
2007).   
Credibility and the Internet    
     Mainstream media outlets have floundered in the Internet age, particularly as newspapers 
have wrestled with issues such as whether to charge for online subscriptions and how to 
capitalize on the rapidly growing online advertising market (Miel & Faris, 2009). Yet, traditional 
gatekeeping authority has endured online. Online journalists have been found to be influenced by 
gatekeeping forces just like their counterparts in print (Cassidy, 2006).  Perhaps one of the 
biggest changes in the online world has to do with the nature of the audience. McQuail writes 
that “there are large possibilities for change” in terms of the role of the audience, “especially in 
the direction of greater autonomy and equality in relation to sources and suppliers,” as the 


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