United States

Population 329m
Internet penetration 89%

Compiled with the help of Joy Jenkins, School of Journalism and Electronic Media University of Tennessee and Lucas Graves, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to reshape the US media environment with local and national news media hit badly by declining advertising and print revenues. The Presidential election in November will mark another test for a news media that suffers from low trust driven by high levels of political polarisation.

Top Brands

Changing Media

The bump in news consumption is clearly visible in 2017 after the election of Donald Trump and we know that the COVID-19 lockdowns (not shown on this chart) also caused TV and online traffic to surge for a time. Meanwhile the smartphone (58%) has overtaken computers and laptops (50%) in terms of weekly news.


The climate of heightened hostility towards much of the media under Donald Trump shows no signs of abating as attention turns to the 2020 election. The relentless attacks and polarised politics appear to be exacerbating already low levels of media trust. Some of the most strongly distrusted news brands (Fox/CNN) are also the most viewed on television and online.