MST-YouGov Poll Shows Public Attitudes to Royal Charters

 

Public support Parliamentary Charter over press Charter by factor of almost 4 to 1

Access the data here: MST YouGov poll data July 2013 full (.pdf)

YouGov/MST poll shows that the public support the Parliamentary Charter over the press’ Royal Charter by a factor of almost 4-1 (50% vs 13%). Over six out of ten believe that newspaper publishers should accept the new system agreed by the three main parties and Parliament, even if they object to it.

  • 50% of respondents think the Privy Council should approve the Royal Charter approved by Parliament vs 13% who think it should approve the one put forward by the major newspaper publishers
  • 61% think that newspaper publishers should accept the system of press regulation agreed by the three main parties and Parliament, even if they object to it, vs 15% who think the should be allowed to set up their own system
  • 68% would not have confidence in a system of press regulation established by the major newspaper publishers (up from 56% when the same question was last asked in May)
  • 82% think there is a risk that there would be a repeat of unethical and illegal practices if the alternative system of press regulation proposed by newspapers went ahead (up from 73% when the same question was asked in May)

A YouGov poll of 1,866 British adults, commissioned by the Media Standards Trust and conducted on 17th-18th July 2013, has shown that almost four times as many respondents prefer the Royal Charter agreed by Parliament as opposed to the Royal Charter proposed by newspaper publishers.

They also think the Royal Charter should be implemented before the summer, with 63% saying either that implementation is overdue or that it should happen now. Only 16% support a delay over the summer for negotiations.

59% of newspaper readers want the newspaper they read to join the new system of regulation and would be disappointed if it did not. This compares to just 11% who do not want their newspaper to join the new system.

Trust remains high in Lord Justice Leveson, with 61% saying they trust the judge a great deal or a fair amount, as compared to 17% who trust the major newspaper publishers.

In the same poll, 69% of respondents said they were in favour of tougher regulation. Just 4% would like it to be less tough, and 18% are satisfied with current levels of press regulation.

The majority of newspaper readers wanted newspaper publishers to accept the system of press regulation agreed by the three main parties and Parliament, even if they object to it. This includes 59% of Daily Mail readers, 68% of Times/Telegraph readers, and 72% of Guardian readers.

Martin Moore, director of the Media Standards Trust, said, “This poll shows that the public are in favour of tougher press regulation and have little faith in the system being proposed by publishers. They back the Parliamentary Charter, and want it to be implemented as soon as possible”.

To see the full results go to YouGov.

To discuss the results or for further comment please contact Martin Moore at +44 (0)20 7727 5252 or martin.moore@mediastandardstrust.org

 

General Results

 

Q1: The Leveson Inquiry into the culture, practices and ethics of the press, which started in 2011 following revelations about phone-hacking and other abuses carried out by the press, made recommendations for reform of press regulation in November last year.

 

 

Q2: The government, through the Privy Council, is currently due to consider two Royal Charters governing press regulation. One is a proposed Royal Charter approved by Parliament, implementing the system agreed by the three main political parties and supported by groups representing some of the victims of press abuse. The other is a proposed Royal charter implementing the system put forward by a number of major newspaper publishers.

Which Royal charter do you think the Privy Council should approve?

 

 

Q3: Which of these two statements comes closest to your own view?

 

 

Q4: How much confidence would you have in a system of press regulation established by the major newspaper publishers?

 

 

Q5: Imagine that the new system of press regulation agreed by Parliament did NOT go ahead, and instead the alternative system of press regulation proposed by the newspapers went ahead.

What risk, if any, do you think there is that there would be a repeat of unethical and illegal practices (such as phone-hacking and intrusions into people’s private lives) that were revealed during the Leveson Inquiry?

 

 

Q6: What degree of involvement in running the new system of press self-regulation do you think the major newspaper publishers should have?

 

 

Q7: Lord Justice Leveson delivered his report in November 2012. In March of this year Parliament voted that the Royal Charter, which was intended to deliver the Leveson recommendations and was agreed by all three parties, should be implemented at the next opportunity. Newspaper publishers have called for a delay in order for there to be further negotiation over the summer.

Which comes closest to your views?

Q8: Imagine the new system of press regulation agreed by Parliament DID go ahead, but some newspaper groups continued to oppose it and did not join the new regulator.

Thinking about the newspaper you tend to read the most, which of these statements comes closest to your view?

Q9: In the arguments around what to do about regulation of the press, how much, if at all, do you trust each of the following?

Selected Results by Political Party

 

The Leveson Inquiry into the culture, practices and ethics of the press, which started in 2011 following revelations about phone-hacking and other abuses carried out by the press, made recommendations for reform of press regulation in November last year.

 

 

The government, through the Privy Council, is currently due to consider two Royal Charters governing press regulation. One is a proposed Royal Charter approved by Parliament, implementing the system agreed by the three main political parties and supported by groups representing some of the victims of press abuse. The other is a proposed Royal charter implementing the system put forward by a number of major newspaper publishers.

Which Royal charter do you think the Privy Council should approve?

 

 

Which of these two statements comes closest to your own view?

 

 

How much confidence would you have in a system of press regulation established by the major newspaper publishers?

 

 

Imagine that the new system of press regulation agreed by Parliament did NOT go ahead, and instead the alternative system of press regulation proposed by the newspapers went ahead.

What risk, if any, do you think there is that there would be a repeat of unethical and illegal practices (such as phone-hacking and intrusions into people’s private lives) that were revealed during the Leveson Inquiry?

 

 

*All data is derived from categories with more than 100 responses, ensuring reliability of results.