Publication details

Just a “Mouthpiece of Biased Elites?” Populist Party Sympathizers and Trust in Czech Public Service Media



Year of publication 2023
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source The International Journal of Press/Politics
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Keywords Public Service Media; populism; anti-media populism; trust in media; political attitudes; trust in Public Service Media
Description Existing research indicates that people with populist attitudes express lower trust in media, especially in Public Service Media. It is assumed that these people are alienated because of their values: populist ideology stems from anti-pluralism whereas Public Service Media promotes pluralism. This study tests this assumption by comparing the predictors of trust in Public Service Media between the populist party sympathizers and the sympathizers of other political parties in the Czech Republic. Two main expectations were included as predictors for trust in Public Service Media, specifically that media should conform to one's worldview (i.e., the cohesive dimension of trust in media) and that media should adhere to the normative standards of journalism (i.e., the normative dimension of trust in media). Using multigroup structural equation modeling, the study analyzes data from a 2019–2020 representative survey of the adult Czech population (N??=??3,251). The results suggest that, for the populist party sympathizers, trust in Public Service Media links only to their expectation that media should conform to their worldview, while the sympathizers of other political parties expect normative standards to be maintained. This is interpreted and discussed as support for the assumption that this value-based mismatch links to the populist audience members' lower trust in Public Service Media.
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