BEFORE we go on, maybe we should clarify the above heading.
That's "trusting journalists" as "people learning to trust journalists more" rather than "journalists who take everything on trust". If that's not clear, it should be by the time you read this.
Anyway: as a profession we like to think we've cleaned up our act over the last year. The News of the World, which was prone to, well, breaking the law in pursuit of lurid stories and excitable headlines, has gone forever. Tabloid stings are largely a thing of the past.
Granted, one London-based paper, still troubled now and again by temptation, gave in the other week and ran photographs of Prince Harry depicting him in an excessively relaxed and friendly mood. The upside, however, is that not one UK paper has run the photographs of Kate Middleton, showing her relaxed. An Irish editor who published them is currently suspended; Richard Desmond, the paper's joint shareholder (and a man who, of course, has never, ever printed salacious material of any description), initially threatened it with closure. Above all, the media is awaiting Lord Leveson's thoughts on future regulation of the press with some trepidation.
Despite the foregoing, a new Which? survey says only 7% of respondents would trust us to act in their best interests, putting us on a par with politicians. We even trailed behind bankers (11%). That would be the same bankers, presumably, who have dabbled in so many banking scandals. When bankers beat you in a poll, and when 67% of people insist that they don't trust you, you know you're in trouble. Plainly, we still have a lot to do before we enjoy the trust ratings of, say, doctors and nurses.
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