In a recent study by Frank Luntz, two focus groups were asked what they thought about the credibility of the news business. The responses revealed the American public is losing trust in the media and doubts that the news is being delivered straight.

David Zurawik and Joe Concha appeared on Media Buzz today to discuss what this might mean for the news and how it is reported.

Zurawik said the media has been battered in recent years by technology and economics and has lost a sense of higher purpose, of serving democracy. He added that losing nerve and confidence doesn’t help either.

Concha pointed to an explosion opinion journalism as another cause of growing distrust in the media.

"We’ve never been more polarized than we are now. Audiences, therefore, are more polarized, as well," he said. "If the messenger, host, anchor is giving an opinion and half the audience may disagree with it, that's where the distrust comes in."

An additional problem for traditional news organizations is the rise of social media, which often leads to rushed or inaccurate reporting and many other issues.

Concha used football as a metaphor: Social media is a blitzing linebacker, forcing the quarterback - or regular news organizations - into releasing the ball early because they're afraid of getting beat to the punch.

“We’ve lost our sense of being a watchdog for the people," Zurawik concluded. "People are really suffering in this country, and they don’t see us as on their side, trying to get them information.”

Watch the clip above.


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