Harvard University study shows MSM coverage of President Trump overwhelmingly negative

This comes as no surprise to us, but it’s still good to have confirming statistics.

A new report from Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy found that U.S. and European news coverage of President Trump’s first 100 days in office was overwhelmingly negative.

The report is based on an analysis of news reports in the print editions of The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post, the main newscasts of CBS, CNN, Fox News, and NBC, and three European news outlets (The UK’s Financial Times and BBC, and Germany’s ARD).

The report defines “negative” tone of coverage as stories/reports in which:

  • Trump is criticized directly.
  • An event, trend, or development reflects unfavorably on Trump, e.g., stories that appeared under the headlines “President Trump’s approval rating hits a new low” and “GOP withdraws embattled health care bill, handing major setback to Trump, Ryan.”

Here are the report’s findings:

(1) The media are obsessed with President Trump: Trump was the topic of 41% of all news stories—three times the amount of coverage received by previous presidents.

(2) On almost every major Trump topic, the media’s coverage was overwhelmingly more negative than positive.

(3) The media set a new standard for unfavorable coverage (80%) in their coverage of President Trump. In contrast, only 41% of the media’s coverage of Obama was negative.

(4) The liberal MSM were overwhelmingly negative, with CNN and NBC leading the way with a stunning 93% of their coverage of Trump being negative. Even the Wall Street Journal was more negative (70%) than positive. Although Fox was the only news outlet in the study that came close to giving Trump positive coverage overall, a majority (52%) of the network’s reporting on Trump still was negative.

(5) European reporters were even more negative than U.S. reporters.

(6) With the exception of Fox, the majority of media all question Trump’s fitness for office:

(7) The only thing that Trump did which garnered glowing positive coverage from the media was his missile attack on Syria, showing that the corporate media are all blood-thirsty warmongers.

The Harvard report concludes:

Trump’s coverage during his first 100 days was negative even by the standards of today’s hyper-critical press. Studies of earlier presidents found nothing comparable to the level of unfavorable coverage afforded Trump. […]

Have the mainstream media covered Trump in a fair and balanced way? […] The early days of his presidency have been marked by far more missteps and miss-hits, often self-inflicted, than any presidency in memory, perhaps ever. […]

Nevertheless, the sheer level of negative coverage gives weight to Trump’s contention, one shared by his core constituency, that the media are hell bent on destroying his presidency. […]

At the same time, the news media need to give Trump credit when his actions warrant it. The public’s low level of confidence in the press is the result of several factors, one of which is a belief that journalists are biased. That perception weakens the press’s watchdog role. One of the more remarkable features of news coverage of Trump’s first 100 days is that it has changed few minds about the president, for better or worse. The nation’s watchdog has lost much of its bite and won’t regain it until the public perceives it as an impartial broker, applying the same reporting standards to both parties. […]

Journalists would also do well to spend less time in Washington and more time in places where policy intersects with people’s lives. If they had done so during the presidential campaign, they would not have missed the story that keyed Trump’s victory—the fading of the American Dream for millions of ordinary people. […]

Never have journalists fixated on a single newsmaker for as long as they have on Trump. If he sees journalists as his main opponents, one reason is that between Trump and themselves there’s not much air time for everyone else. Journalists need to resist even the smallest temptation to see themselves as opponents of government. It’s the competition between the party in power and the opposing party, and not between government and the press, that’s at the core of the democratic process.

Will journalists heed the report’s counsel?

I doubt it.

~Eowyn

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13 responses to “Harvard University study shows MSM coverage of President Trump overwhelmingly negative

  1. traildustfotm

    These are the progeny of the MSM of the Reagan era. I remember having a hard time feeling okay with Reagan because the MSM never stopped trying to paint him as a dangerous war monger who may accidentally set off a nuclear war.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Dr Eowyn . . . You have outdone yourself in bringing us such an excellent article. Although, we instinctively know this bias is going on . . . I am heartsick that average people who depend on the “news” for information about what is going on in our country are dependent on this kind of garbage. How do we ever win their hearts and minds, when the cards are so markedly stacked against us? I guess the only thing that we can depend on for us is that we are diligent in offering prayers to Our God that this poisonous news no be headed by the majority of citizens. Hopefully, as time goes on people will be able to see that good is coming out of Washington, DC at this point in time.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. And there’s this kind of stuff too!

    http://skywatchtv.com/2017/05/25/l-times-responds-trumps-christian-pilgrimage-instructing-readers-use-witchcraft-put-binding-curse-president/

    Isn’t that just lovely? Let’s pray that whatsoever spells these devils try to cast on our President, it will come back to them many times over. I pray the Lord will continue to place a hedge of protection around President Trump.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Pingback: KOMMONSENTSJANE – MSM coverage of President Trump overwhelmingly negative — Fellowship of the Minds | kommonsentsjane

  5. That wacky media…

    Liked by 3 people

  6. When evil people revile you they’re just letting you know you’re on the right track.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. I just wish there was a way to show those who rely on MSM that their News purveyors are still so shell-shocked that their chosen one failed to get the White House that they’ll go so far as to blatantly lie,make up stories and falsify any data needed to convince the World that our President isn’t a legitimate choice. I know none of this can be considered Treason,but I believe it ALL reeks of anti-American behavior,and should be criminalized in some manner. That said,this is STILL America,and regardless of how stupidly they’re conveying their displeasure in their LOSS,they have the Right to do so. (It’d be WONDERFUL if they could step back and see,objectively,what they look like to US. Maybe they’d understand why it’s so hard to take these chowder-heads seriously.)
    More and more I’m thinking the first “war” Trump should take on should be one of taking the Liberals’ POWER from them,starting with new rules for MSM regarding the percentage of Anti-Americanism allowed on the air. It’s VERY BAD for America for the Media and Leftists to be fomenting discord against our President,his policies,his abilities,even his Family. It’s plain and simple-a President who loves America THIS MUCH won’t do things that will HURT America. Let the man WORK.

    Liked by 2 people

    • The amazing part is there’s still people who believe them. Either that or they want the fabrication media to be true over reality as they love their slavery and fear freedom.

      Like

  8. Journalists , sales and marketing people…..2nd against the wall ( after the bankers) come the revolution.

    Like

  9. Leave it to Savannah GOOFY, Matt SOUR, and Lester GLOATS and their broadcasts full of twisted news, ill intentions and negative reporting in order to keep the American peoples’ discontent with President Trump. President Trump is returning home stronger, confident and more presidential. Our power is emerging once more, the NATO alliance is seeing a different United States and the Arab world will unite with us to exterminate the evil fronts.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I’ve already lamented here about the current state of the AP news service. And I’ve noticed Lester Holtz on NBC has recently (6 weeks?) gone very negative in his stories on Trump, or rather the stories themselves have taken a decidedly nasty turn. Must be someone from above deciding to go after the “viewing left” they were losing to other networks. Todd Chuck [sic] on Meet the Press (also NBC) has mellowed a bit recently, not sure why, but John Dickerson and Face the Nation (CBS) is obviously trying to impress Soros or the likes with his combative interviews and discussions. That’s been months in the making, since the elections, even before. On This Week (ABC), George Stephanopoulos, who had been pretty steadfastly moderate as a host considering his years as Clinton’s CoS, suddenly went bombastically anti-Trump recently, took a week or two off, and seems to have returned with his composure intact. But I thought he was going to lose it in an interview a few weeks ago with Trump’s man, Stephen Miller. Used to watch David Muir on ABC, and before that, Tom Brokaw on NBC. But Muir’s reporting began to be too much commentary against Trump, Republicans, conservatives, and Christians. And Brokaw has gone wacky leftist since leaving his spot on the evening news. I’d thought he was decent before. I don’t watch Scott Pelley on CBS. Too much bad taste left from seeing him on 60 Minutes.
    PBS: Washington Week, now led by Robert Costa, is pretty staunchly young & left — was getting that way even under Gwen Ifill. To the Contrary has unexpectedly gone back to a more balanced (but left) format after having gone full left for a while. Charlie Rose? Always tries to please his Hollywood liberal friends so they think he’s cool. But at least respectful when he does have the occasional conservative guest once or twice a year. Washington Chronical used to be OK, now they spew anti-Trump hatred. News Hour is fairly staunchly leftist since Lehrer left. Of course, PBS killed Wall Street Week and set Uncle Lou out to pasture (RIP) years ago, followed by selling NBR to CNBC and similarly sending Paul Kangas out to pasture (RIP). Ditto for The Wall Street Journal Report going from ABC to CNBC and dropping Maria Bartiromo for Becky Quick to become “On the Money” As with NBR, still a good show. Not sure why the WSJ seems so anti-Trump.

    So now? I pretty much trust no one but CSpan, where I can watch live or recorded events that even the AP reports wrong, which then gets retold on the local and nightly news shows… and I watch and mostly trust news on EWTN and TBN/CBN. I still check the AP site, but it gets a LOT wrong.
    Pretty sad. I did Google the UPI news service; they died out long ago and are now owned by Sun Myung Moon and his church… go figure.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Pingback: The MSM is exactly what they have been labeled … BIASED! – On the Patio

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