The proliferation of fake news and lack of trust in the media hasn't been good news for our democracy, but philanthropy can help strengthen this important institution. Learn more:

Nearly seven-in-ten (68%) say made-up news and information greatly affects Americans’ confidence in government institutions, and roughly half (54%) say it is having a major impact on Americans’ confidence in each other.

We need a media that can stand up to attacks and provide a check on power for government and platforms. But we also need newsrooms that can help bring Americans together, inform our debates, and encourage respectful vibrant engagement in our communities.

Considerations for Funding Media and Journalism

In a study sponsored by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Media Impact Funders analyzed the trends and significant gaps in global media funding. This report can help donors prioritize and better understand the state of financing media efforts. Here are some of the key findings:

  • Donors need a greater understanding of local needs to create a stronger media ecosystem and improved outcomes.
  • There are also new ways for funders to work together, in multi-stakeholder coalitions, and even in partnership with grantees.
  • New funding approaches and sources highlight the need for gathering and analyzing data about global media funding.

Here are the top media funders in the United States from Media Impact Funders.

Global Media Philanthropy, Media Impact Funders

How to Take Action Toward Rebuilding Trust in the Media

 Nonprofit Media And Exposing Injustice: How Philanthropy Can Help, Center For Effective Philanthropy
Philanthropists can help fund nonprofit media and journalism to help these outlets tell critical stories.

For funders who might consider support for journalism like this, two critical and related points must be understood: 1) journalism can have a huge impact on civic affairs; and 2) journalists have to approach each story with fairness and independence.

10 Ways To Rebuild Trust In Media And Democracy, The Aspen Institute

  • The Knight Commission on Trust, Media, and Democracy outlines 10 ways to rebuild trust in our democratic systems and media.

Impact Lessons From A Community Foundation Investing In Local Journalism, Media Impact Funders

  • Grants from the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan help support local journalism, increasing capacity for outlets and building trust. Donors can support local journalism by providing capital for community foundations with the same mission.

Press Freedom: Protecting Your Right To Be Informed, Committee to Protect Journalists

  • The United States itself is experiencing a crisis in press freedom.  To help address this crisis, funders can take the opportunity to defend and support vulnerable journalists.