On the political scale, Swedish journalists can be placed to the left of the Swedish public and their elected politicians. And the distance between the two sides has increased significantly in recent decades - just like in America.
But in Sweden, the public and politicians have moved a little bit to the right while journalists have either stayed left or moved a little, according to results from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
'The transition of journalists farther and farther to the left on the political scale stagnated in the mid-1990s,' says Professor Kent Asp, who headed the study. The research findings, which are based on questionnaires completed by journalists, the public and members of the Swedish Parliament, are presented in the book titled Svenska journalister 1989-2011.
Compared to the public, journalists generally have much less confidence in banks and the Swedish Royal Court, and journalists in the public service sector are more leftist than their counterparts in commercial radio and television and the daily press. And, as expected, culture journalists and journalists born in the 1940s also tend to be more leftist than their colleagues.
Journalists are also twice as likely to work overtime and they eat out three times as often. Two-thirds of them use social media on a daily basis. The professional ideals of scrutiny and objectivity are deeply rooted. The book presents results concerning journalists' opinions and values and how they view themselves and their work. The journalists' responses have one interesting thing in common, says Kent Asp.
'Journalists perceive that their readers, listeners and viewers are gaining more and more power. The journalists are also becoming more and more positive to tailoring their work to suit their audiences.'