Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date


Faculty Sponsor

Richard Kinney


In recent years, the United States news media has grown more partisan and thus more biased. This has led some people not to trust the United States news media. Others have embraced the new partisan United States news media. However, by embracing a United States news media that is more partisan and in a way commercial has this led the American public to be exposed to more negative stories about the United States and thus to become more pessimistic about the United States? The United States media’s impact as a source of information has an important affect on how United States citizens view their government and how well they understand the political process. It is important that it be determined that the United States’ news media doesn’t always lead Americans to be pessimistic about the United States, since this can led to a decline in voter turnout, political activism, and other behaviors. By examining how much trust the United States public places in the media, how well they understand politics, the employment status of Americans, the household income of Americans, and how much personal optimism the United States public has, we can better understand what impact the United States media has on optimism or pessimism about the United States. My research question was does the United States media increase optimism or pessimism about the United States? The unit of analysis was American citizens, who are exhibiting either optimism or pessimism about the United States. By performing regression analysis, it was shown that optimism and pessimism about the United States has more to do with household income and personal optimism rather than distrust in the media.