Autoría: Marcela Campos-Rueda, Manuel Goyanes
Abstract: As PSM change and adapt –with variable outcomes– to a digital and multiplatform environment, their roles and functions are overly under severe scrutiny. The normative expectations of PSM and their performance have been extensively discussed from a theoretical and regulatory approach, but studies from an audience perspective are still rather scarce. If PSM’s primary stakeholder is to be considered the citizenship it serves, it is, therefore, vital to understand what is valuable to society and how citizens assess PSM’s performance. Drawing upon representative survey data from Spain (N = 1717), this study examines the role played by structural and perceptual variables in accounting for the citizen’s assessment of the national public broadcaster (TVE), considering six roles: watchdog, analysis, mobilization, public forum, social empathy, and information. Findings first indicate that perceptions of independence and citizens’ evaluation of TVE’s journalists are positively associated with all dimensions of TVE evaluations. However, when exploring the role of political knowledge, results indicate a negative association with some of PSM’s most critical functions. All in all, our research illustrates that, despite all the changes in the media landscape, when it comes to delivering the news, citizens seem to stick to values traditionally associated with PSM: independent and qualified journalism trained for and committed to the public service of delivering accurate and unbiased information.