The first phone-hacking polling is not good for the NOTW

The first phone-hacking polling is not good for the NOTW

There’s a Survation poll in conjunction with Channel 4 just out and the findings are pretty negative for News International and the News of the World.

To what extent could the allegations of phone hacking into active criminal cases effect readership of The News Of The World?

88% of all readers of The News Of The World surveyed said they were aware of the new phone hacking allegations. 52% of all readers said that if the allegations proved accurate they would be less likely to buy the newspaper in future. 23% said they would not be less likely and 25% said they didn’t know.

What is the public’s belief of News International’s prior knowledge of the way these stories were allegedly gathered?
72% of those surveyed said they did NOT believe that executives at News International were unaware of the new hacking allegations until July 4th vs only 7% who believed News International’s Statement on the new allegations. 21% did not know.

Which members or former member of News International /News Corp do the public consider to be most responsible should the allegations be found accurate?
In terms of bearing responsibility for the alleged hacking (respondents could choose multiple options), those surveyed thought Rebekah Brooks had the most responsibility (66%) followed by Glen Mulcaire (56%) and Rupert Murdoch (45%) then Andy Coulson (42%). Significantly, only 19% of respondents thought that “the specific journalists involved bore responsibility but not the newspaper editor or owners”.

News Corp and the BSkyB Transaction?
Asking respondents the question “Some people say that invasion of individuals’ privacy by the News of the World makes News Corporation unfit to own all of British Sky Broadcasting, and that despite granting permission the government should now block News Corp’s attempt to buy the 61% of BSkyB it doesn’t already own. What is your view?”

48% think now that News Corporation is unfit to own all of British Sky broadcasting. 34% felt that It is too early to judge as all the the facts have not been established. Interestingly, only 12% considered the privacy allegations not relevant to the transaction.

How do the public feel David Cameron handled the controversies over hacking allegations?
Only 9% of those asked felt that David Cameron had handled the controversies over hacking “well” The balance were split between “adequately” – 34% and “badly” – 37% with 20% saying they didn’t know.

The sample size of just 645 was very small. Survation tell me that it would have been larger but they had to have a cut-off to meet the Channel 4 deadline.

Interestingly there were NO hacking-related question asked in tonight’s YouGov daily poll. The client, of course, is News International.

Mike Smithson

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