Document Type


Publication Date



This paper traces the functions and effects of the mass media from a sociological perspective and how the media may be instrumental in building trust and credibility in the social institutions of a culture. Using a survey, the author describes respondents’ levels of interest in the news media, and correlated levels of trust in the U.S. government, its legal system, its economy, and its news media.


Original published version available at

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Publication Title

French Journal For Media Research

Included in

Communication Commons



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.