The Pew Center has been conducting polls on news media credibility for 24 years and, over the history of that polling, the news media ratings as far as "getting the facts straight" and "dealing fairly with all sides are now at an all time low:A mere 18% believe that the news media deal fairly with all sides.
The partisan breakdown is also interesting:
Even a large majority of Democrats, 59%, now believe that the stories are "often inaccurate."
To me, the problem is not the occasional scandal, such as Rathergate (CBS), Stephen Glass (The New Republic), Jordon Eason and CNN, "Operation Tailwind" (CNN), Janet Cooke (Washington Post), Walter Duranty (New York Times), Fauxtography (AP), Jayson Blair (New York Times), or the "GI rape" photos (Boston Globe). It is instead the pervasive everyday falsehoods that are printed when reporters accept biased press releases as fact. Examples are when CNN accepts Media Matters for America as an arbiter of "truth," or when Democratic party operatives with Obama-as-Hitler photos are accepted as being real tea party protesters, or when Democrats use fake doctors at Obamacare townhalls. It is such everyday falsehoods that make the news media unreliable.