The winners included the New York Times, USA Today, National Public Radio, and viewers of Sunday morning news shows.
For example, people who report reading a national newspaper like The New York Times or USA Today are 12-points more likely to know that Egyptians have overthrown their government than those who have not looked at any news source. And those who listen to the non-profit NPR radio network are 11-points more likely to know the outcome of the revolt against Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. However, the best informed respondents are those that watched Sunday morning news programs: leading to a 16-point increase in the likelihood of knowing what happened in Egypt and an 8-point increase in the likelihood of knowing what happened in Syria.Additional winners were The Daily Show and MSNBC.
Listening to NPR also helps, but the biggest aid to answering correctly is The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, which leads to a 6-point decrease in identifying the protestors as Republicans, and a 12-point increase in the likelihood of giving the correct answer.
Watching MSNBC was associated with a 10-point increase in identifying Romney as the leader, and a 5-point drop in the likelihood of identifying Cain compared to those who got no exposure to news at all.The big loser was Fox News.
Sunday morning news shows do the most to help people learn about current events, while some outlets, especially Fox News, lead people to be even less informed than those who they don’t watch any news at all.The survey was limited to one of the smaller states, by land area. So, it is not mathematically clear that these results can be extrapolated to the rest of the country. I am biased and often consider Fox News to be less than reliable. Real data is far better than personal bias.
Thanks to the New Civil Rights Movement for the heads up.