ROCHESTER, N.Y.--()--Many groups have been at the center of the “blame game” over who has responsibility for the current economic crisis. Could the media, advertising agencies and/or friends and family deserve at least some of the responsibility for causing people to purchase things they couldn’t afford? According to the American public, the answer is yes.
There is also an age divide over who is to blame for the economic crisis. People aged 55 and older are more likely to blame the five media categories and the advertising agencies. On the flip side, those aged 18-34 are less likely to say these six groups have at least some responsibility. For example, three-quarters of the older age group (75%) say advertising agencies have at least some responsibility compared to three in five (60%) 18-34 year olds. When it comes to print media, two-thirds of those aged 55 and older (67%) say they have at least some responsibility while just half of the younger age group (51%) say print media has at least some responsibility.
Americans are angry and upset about the state of the economy and need someone or some group to blame. The media is always a perfect scapegoat when it comes to taking the blame, whether it’s a political slogan such as 1992’s “Annoy the media, re-elect President Bush” or causing the recent economic crisis. Advertising agencies, however, are normally under the radar screen. Now, thanks to television shows like Mad Men and Trust Me, they are slightly more visible and they are an easy scapegoat.
This Harris Poll® was conducted online within the United States March 31 and April 1, 2009 among 2,220 adults (aged 18 and over). Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online. Full data table and methodology are available at www.harrisinteractive.com.
These statements conform to the principles of disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.
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Harris Interactive Inc. 4/09