Trust me, I’m a spin doctor
A survey has found that UAE residents have surprisingly high trust in the media and banks.
January 26, 2010 3:39 by kippreport
According to a survey from Edelman, UAE residents’ trust in the government is among the highest in the world. The finding comes in the PR firm’s annual ‘Trust Barometer’, which this year canvassed the opinion of UAE residents for the first time.
Out of 200 people surveyed in the UAE – both Emiratis and expatriates – around 67 percent expressed trust in the government. Those questioned have less trust in NGOs, which attracted a rating of 45 percent, compared with 63 percent in the US and 74 percent in the Netherlands.
Surprisingly, UAE residents have more trust in the media than residents of most Western countries. Traditional channels such as newspapers were highly rated, while social networking sites were deemed the least credible sources of information. This is despite the widely-reported fact that local media outlets practice heavy self-censorship.
The survey also found that trust in banks is high at 75 percent, compared to levels as low as 29 percent in US and 19 percent in Germany.
Where have these people been?
According to the company, the people surveyed were “influencers, well-educated and high on the socio-economic scale”. So they’re clearly aware of the issues involved.
But Kipp would like to ask another question: Do we trust Edelman’s survey? We do not doubt the genuine trust UAE residents have in the government – this is, after all, one of the most stable countries in an otherwise troubled region. But do people really trust the media here, given its obvious self-censorship? And the banks, moneymen and bean-counters, given the financial crisis?
One thing to note is that the survey was conducted between September 29 and December 6 last year. And so one assumes that the bulk of the interviews took place before November 25, when the news of the Dubai World debt standstill emerged.
With this in mind, it will certainly be interesting to see the 2011 edition of Edelman’s survey…