HKU POP SITE releases people's appraisal of local news media Back

 
Press Release on April 26, 2011

| Abstract | Latest Figures | Commentary | Future Release (Tentative)
| Detailed Findings (People's Appraisal of the Local News Media) |


Abstract

The Public Opinion Programme (POP) at the University of Hong Kong interviewed 1,003 Hong Kong people between 11 and 18 April 2011 by means of a random telephone survey conducted by real interviewers. The survey finds that the general credibility rating of the news media has significantly receded from its record high registered about half a year ago to the level registered three-and-a-half years ago, paralleled by a 10 percentage-point drop in people's satisfaction with the performance of the local news media, which continues to be lower than people's satisfaction with press freedom. Among various types of news media, people are still most satisfied with the television, followed by radio, with net satisfaction standing at positive 60 and 56 percentage points respectively. The net satisfaction rates of the internet and newspapers now stand at positive 20 and 15 percentage points, while that of magazines stands at negative 46 percentage points. Most people think the media has given full play to press freedom, but at the same time misused or abused press freedom, only 30% consider the media to be responsible in their reporting. It should be noted that more than half believe Hong Kong's news media have practiced self-censorship, which is record high since the handover, mainly because of their hesitation to criticize the Central Government, but not so when criticizing the HKSAR Government. The maximum sampling error of percentages is not more than +/-4% at 95% confidence level while that of ratings is below +/-0.15 marks. The response rate of the rating survey is 66%.

Points to note:
[1] The address of the"HKU POP SITE" is http://hkupop.hku.hk, journalists can check out the details of the survey there.
[2] The sample size of the survey on people's appraisal of local news media is 1,003 successful interviews, not 1,003 x 66.0% response rate.
[3] The maximum sampling error of all percentages is between +/-2 and +/-4 percentage points at 95% confidence level, while the sampling error of the rating figure is below +/-0.15 marks."95% confidence level" means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times, using the same questions each time but with different random samples, we would expect 95 times getting a figure within the error margins specified. When quoting these figures, journalists can state "sampling error of rating not more than +/-0.15 marks and sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4% at 95% confidence level".
[4] When quoting percentages of this survey, journalists should refrain from reporting decimal places, but when quoting the rating figures, one decimal place can be used, in order to match the precision level of the figures.
[5] The data of this survey is collected by means of random telephone interviews conducted by real interviewers, not by any interactive voice system (IVS). If a research organization uses"computerized random telephone survey" to camouflage its IVS operation, it should be considered unprofessional.



Latest Figures

POP today releases on schedule via the "POP SITE" the latest popularity figures of people's appraisal of local news media. As a general practice, all figures have been weighted according to provisional figures obtained from the Census and Statistics Department regarding the gender-age distribution of the Hong Kong population in year-end 2010. Herewith the contact information for the latest survey:

Date of survey

Overall sample size

Response rate

Sampling error of percentages [6]

11-18/4/2011

1,003

66.0%

+/-3%

[6] Calculated at 95% confidence level using full sample size. “95% confidence level” means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times, using the same questions each time but with different random samples, we would expect 95 times getting a figure within the error margins specified.


Recent figures are summarized as follows:

Date of survey

7-13/9/09

15-25/4/10

7-11/9/2010

11-18/4/2011

Latest change

Sample base[10]

1,002

1,020

1,011

516-624

--

Overall response rate

69.7%

69.8%

65.3%

66.0%

--

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding and error [7]

--

Credibility rating of the local news media in general

6.25[9]

6.18

6.53[9]

6.03+/-0.15

-0.5[9]

Freedom of the press in HK: Satisfaction rate [8]

75%

71%[9]

73%

68+/-4%

-5%[9]

Freedom of the press in HK: Dissatisfaction rate [8]

9%

14%[9]

11%[9]

13+/-3%

+2%

Net satisfaction rate

+66%

+57%

+62%

+55%

-7%

Mean value[8]

3.8+/-0.1
(Base=989)

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=1,009)

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=995)

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=558)

--

Perceived the local news media to be responsible in their reporting [8]

34%[9]

32%

41%[9]

30+/-4%

-11%[9]

Perceived the local news media to be irresponsible in their reporting [8]

24%[9]

29%[9]

17%[9]

26+/-4%

+9%[9]

Mean value[8]

3.1+/-0.1
(Base=964)

3.0+/-0.1
(Base=982)

3.3+/-0.1[9]
(Base=960)

3.0+/-0.1
(Base=528)

-0.3[9]

Perceived that the local news media had given full play to the freedom of speech

75%

71%[9]

73%

75+/-4%

+2%

Perceived that the local news media had not given full play to the freedom of speech

21%

23%

21%

22+/-4%

+1%

Perceived that the local news media had misused/abused the freedom of press

59%[9]

62%

61%

60+/-4%

-1%

Perceived that the local news media had not misused/abused the freedom of press

33%[9]

30%

32%

31+/-4%

-1%

Perceived that the local news media had practised self-censorship

51%[9]

48%

51%

54+/-4%

+3%

Perceived that the local news media had not practised self-censorship

34%[9]

40%[9]

34%[9]

33+/-4%

-1%

Perceived that the local news media had scruples when criticizing the HKSAR Government

27%[9]

30%

34%[9]

35+/-4%

+1%

Perceived that the local news media had no scruples when criticizing the HKSAR Government

69%[9]

66%

60%[9]

62+/-4%

+2%

Perceived that the local news media had scruples when criticizing the Central Government

59%[9]

63%[9]

63%

63+/-4%

--

Perceived that the local news media had no scruples when criticizing the Central Government

33%

31%

31%

30+/-4%

-1%

[7] All error figures in the table are calculated at 95% confidence level. "95% confidence level" means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times, using the same questions each time but with different random samples, we would expect 95 times getting a figure within the error margins specified. Media can state"sampling error of rating not more than +/-0.15 mark, sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4% at 95% confidence level" when quoting the above figures. The error margin of previous survey can be found at the POP Site.
[8] Collapsed from a 5-point scale. The mean value is calculated by quantifying all individual responses into 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 marks according to their degree of positive level, where 1 is the lowest and 5 the highest, and then calculate the sample mean
[9] Such changes have gone beyond the sampling errors at the 95% confidence level, meaning that they are statistically significant prima facie. However, whether numerical differences are statistically significant or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.
[10] Starting from 2011, these questions only uses sub-samples of the tracking surveys concerned, the sample size for each question also varies.


Results of latest survey showed that, on a scale of 0-10, the latest credibility rating of the Hong Kong news media in general was 6.03 marks. Moreover, 68% of the respondents were satisfied with the freedom of the press in Hong Kong while 13% were dissatisfied. The mean value is 3.7, meaning close to"quite satisfied". 30% perceived the local news media to be responsible in their reporting, 26% regarded the local news media is irresponsible. The mean value is 3.0, meaning close to"half-half". 75% believed the local news media had given full play to the freedom of speech, but 60% said they had misused or abused the freedom of press. Besides, 54% of the respondents thought the local news media had practised self-censorship while 33% perceived the contrary, 35% thought they had scruples when criticizing the HKSAR Government, whereas 63% thought they had scruples when criticizing the Central Government. The results of other questions such as people's main source of news and their satisfaction on individual news media are shown below:

Date of survey

7-13/9/09

15-25/4/2010

7-11/9/2010

11-18/4/2011

Latest change

Sample base[15]

1,002

1,020

1,011

516-624

--

Overall response rate

69.7%

69.8%

65.3%

66.0%

--

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding

Finding and error[11]

--

People's main source of news: Television

83% [14]

85%

84%

82+/-3%

-2%

People's main source of news: Newspaper

68% [14]

69%

69%

66+/-4%

-3%

People's main source of news: Internet

39%

36%

42%[14]

36+/-4%

-6%[14]

People's main source of news: Radio

32%[14]

33%

27%[14]

26+/-4%

-1%

People's main source of news: Friend

12%

11%

15%[14]

9+/-2%

-6%[14]

Perceived that television was the most trustworthy source

55%[14]

51%[14]

57%[14]

51+/-4%

-6%[14]

Perceived that newspaper was the most trustworthy source

18%[14]

17%

15%

18+/-3%

+3%

Perceived that radio was the most trustworthy source

13%

15%

11%[14]

14+/-3%

+3%

Perceived that internet was the most trustworthy source

4%

5%

4%

7+/-2%

+3%[14]

Perceived that family member was the most trustworthy source

2%

2%

2%

2+/-1%

--

Satisfaction rate of television [12]

66%[14]

73%[14]

74%

70+/-4%

-4%

Dissatisfaction rate of television [12]

6%

7%

4%[14]

10+/-3%

+6%[14]

Net satisfaction rate

+60%

+66%

+70%

+60%

-10%

Mean value[12]

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=987)

3.8+/-0.1
(Base=1010)

3.8+/-0.1
(Base=994)

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=528)

-0.1

Satisfaction rate of radio [12]

56%[14]

66%[14]

61%[14]

63+/-4%

+2%

Dissatisfaction rate of radio [12]

3%

6%[14]

4%[14]

7+/-2%

+3%[14]

Net satisfaction rate

+53%

+60%

+57%

+56%

-1%

Mean value[12]

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=832)

3.8+/-0.1
(Base=905)

3.8+/-0.1
(Base=842)

3.7+/-0.1
(Base=458)

-0.1

Satisfaction rate of internet [12] [13]

--

35%

31%[14]

37+/-4%

+6%[14]

Dissatisfaction rate of internet [12] [13]

--

13%

11%

17+/-3%

+6%[14]

Net satisfaction rate

--

+22%

+20%

+20%

--

Mean value[12]

--

3.3+/-0.1
(Base=744)

3.3+/-0.1
(Base=710)

3.2+/-0.1
(Base=434)

-0.1

Satisfaction rate of newspaper [12]

38%

41%

39%

37+/-4%

-2%

Dissatisfaction rate of newspaper [12]

18%

19%

16%[14]

22+/-4%

+6%[14]

Net satisfaction rate

+20%

+22%

+23%

+15%

-8%

Mean value[12]

3.2+/-0.1
(Base=945)

3.2+/-0.1
(Base=974)

3.3+/-0.1
(Base=936)

3.1+/-0.1
(Base=516)

-0.2[14]

Satisfaction rate of magazine [12]

8%

9%

7%

9+/-2%

+2%

Dissatisfaction rate of magazine [12]

44%

53%[14]

48%[14]

55+/-4%

+7%[14]

Net satisfaction rate

-36%

-44%

-41%

-46%

-5%

Mean value[12]

2.3+/-0.1
(Base=781)

2.3+/-0.1
(Base=846)

2.3+/-0.1
(Base=783)

2.3+/-0.1
(Base=473)

--

Satisfaction rate of news media in general [12]

53%

60%[14]

62%

52+/-4%

-10%[14]

Dissatisfaction rate of news media in general [12]

8%

8%

5%[14]

13+/-3%

+8%[14]

Net satisfaction rate

+45%

+52%

+57%

+39%

-18%

Mean value[12]

3.5+/-0.1
(Base=985)

3.5+/-0.1
(Base=993)

3.6+/-0.1
(Base=984)

3.4+/-0.1
(Base=518)

-0.2[14]

[11] All error figures in the table are calculated at 95% confidence level. "95% confidence level" means that if we were to repeat a certain survey 100 times, using the same questions each time but with different random samples, we would expect 95 times getting a figure within the error margins specified. Media can state"sampling error of percentages not more than +/-4% at 95% confidence level" when quoting the above figures. The error margin of previous survey can be found at the POP Site.
[12] Collapsed from a 5-point scale. The mean value is calculated by quantifying all individual responses into 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 marks according to their degree of positive level, where 1 is the lowest and 5 the highest, and then calculate the sample mean.
[13] Question was first introduced in April 2010.
[14] Such changes have gone beyond the sampling errors at the 95% confidence level, meaning that they are statistically significant prima facie. However, whether numerical differences are statistically significant or not is not the same as whether they are practically useful or meaningful.
[15] Starting from 2011, these questions only uses sub-samples of the tracking surveys concerned, the sample size for each question also varies.


Results of the survey also showed that, 82% and 66% of the respondents claimed their main source of news was television and newspaper respectively, while 51% thought the news reported by the former channel was the most trustworthy. Regarding people's appraisal of various news channels, 70% of the respondents were satisfied with the television, whereas 61% were satisfied with the radio. The mean value for both channels were 3.7, meaning close to"quite satisfied". Comparatively speaking, people's satisfaction with the printed media and the internet was lower, as the respective satisfaction rates of the newspaper, the internet and the magazine were 37%, 37% and 9% only, their mean values were 3.1, 3.2 and 2.3 respectively, which were in between"half-half" and"quite dissatisfied". All in all, the latest satisfaction rate of the above news media in general was 52%, the mean value is 3.4 which is in between"half-half" and"quite satisfied".


Commentary

Robert Ting-Yiu Chung, Director of Public Opinion Programme, observed, "Our latest survey shows that the general credibility rating of the news media has significantly receded from its record high registered about half a year ago to the level registered three-and-a-half years ago, paralleled by a 10 percentage-point drop in people's satisfaction with the performance of the local news media, which continues to be lower than people's satisfaction with press freedom. Among various types of news media, people are still most satisfied with the television, followed by radio, with net satisfaction standing at positive 60 and 56 percentage points respectively. The net satisfaction rates of the internet and newspapers now stand at positive 20 and 15 percentage points, while that of magazines stands at negative 46 percentage points. Most people think the media has given full play to press freedom, but at the same time misused or abused press freedom, only 30% consider the media to be responsible in their reporting. It should be noted that more than half believe Hong Kong's news media have practiced self-censorship, which is record high since the handover, mainly because of their hesitation to criticize the Central Government, but not so when criticizing the HKSAR Government. As for the reasons affecting people's appraisal of the press, readers can make their own judgment after reading the list of events archived in our 'Opinion Daily' feature page in our 'POP Site'."




Future Release (Tentative)

  • May 3, 2011 (Tuesday) 1pm to 2pm: Popularity of Executive Council members

| Abstract | Latest Figures | Commentary | Future Release (Tentative)
| Detailed Findings (People's Appraisal of the Local News Media) |