Television

Americans reinforce trust in pubcaster PBS

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MUMBAI: US pubcaster PBS has announced that its position as an institution that Americans trust is going from strength to strength.

For the second consecutive year, a Roper Public Affairs and Media poll shows that Americans consider PBS to be the countries most trusted institution among nationally known organisations.

According to the study's 1,001 randomly selected participants, Americans also believe that PBS provides the second best use of tax dollars, following military defense. The respondents ranked PBS programming as more important, compared with commercial and cable television. They also consider PBS news and public affairs series the most trustworthy.

PBS president and CEO Pat Mitchell said, "Results from this comprehensive survey help to demonstrate the importance of PBS programming among Americans as well as its institutional value to supporters of the public television service. The results of this survey affirm the American public's trust and value in PBS in an age of exponentially growing media choices.

"It is gratifying to see the success of the rigorous standards to which we hold our programming. Clearly, we have achieved our goal of striving to positively impact the lives of millions through the power of media."

Additional survey highlights:

- PBS is the second most valuable service taxpayers receive, outranked only by military defense by two percentage points. 23 per cent of the respondents stated that PBS was an excellent use of their tax dollars.

- Americans are more satisfied with programming on PBS compared to cable and commercial broadcasters. 38 per cent of respondents are "very satisfied" with current PBS programmes, compared with 21 per cent for cable and 16 per cent for commercial broadcasters.

- 41 per cent of Americans rank PBS as the most trusted source for news and public affairs programs, compared with other network broadcasters.

- 51 per cent believe that the amount of federal funding PBS receives is "too little." 82 per cent believe that public and private funding given to PBS from government, corporations and individuals is "money well spent."

- Americans believe PBS programs address various issues "very well", including: arts and culture, American history, literacy, ethnic and cultural diversity and political and social issues.

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