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APRIL 2010WHITE PAPER
U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
Note on
Reporting:
Many questions required responses on a
five-point scale. To reflect the overall
balance of mind and moo...
WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 3
INTRODUCTION
The past decade has been a time of huge mood swings
and high emotion...
Summary of findings
In the first quarter of 2010, one year into Barack Obama’s presidency, the mind and
mood of Americans ...
This could indicate that the conservative, anti-Obama, anti-government movement
might prove to have a real effect on 2010 ...
responses that show greater anxiety and greater pessimism than men. This doesn’t
necessarily mean women are gloomier; rath...
One potential bright spot is that, for all their dislike of politicians and politics as
practiced in the United States, ma...
IMPLICATIONS
This is not a time when a resumption of business as usual is likely for many
Americans. The country has been ...
The country’s economy has been brought low by “suicide mortgages” sold by
Americans to Americans. Wall Street has apparent...
CHANGES IN ACTIVITY
In Brief: In many areas of life, respondents were on balance less active in community activities over ...
There are many differences
between the New Left and the Tea
Partiers.… But the similarities are more
striking than the dif...
LIFE IN GENERAL
A LITTLE OPTIMISM
In Brief: Americans’ perspectives on many elements of life tended toward the pessimistic...
Even in a down economy, there are plenty of options for entertainment and
recreation, and this was reflected in the balanc...
The Great Recession may be over,
but this era of high joblessness is
probably just beginning. Before it
ends, it will like...
A LOT OF PESSIMISM
In Brief: On many points, particularly related to money, Americans tended to net out far more pessimist...
POLITICS
POLITICAL PERSPECTIVES
In Brief: The mood around major political issues in the United States was undoubtedly not ...
We place trust in these
politicians every time we pull
the lever in November. And yet
we are so easily betrayed. In every
...
There was overwhelming net agreement with the
statement “Americans are angry with the
political establishment” by a margin...
men and women (men net 42.3 percent and women net 24.5 percent). In the over-40 age cohort, the net increase was
40 percen...
20 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
In the wake of the implosion of
nearly all sources of American
authority, this n...
Disapproval has grown over the period; net 21.6 percent rate themselves more disapproving of domestic politics in general
...
No official enjoys a balance of positive expectations. The least negative
expectations are for the city mayor, with a net ...
There was a massive 70.5 percent margin of agreement that “Our candidates can be real people; they don’t have to be
perfec...
POLITICS AND SOCIAL MEDIA: PERSONAL USE AND PREFERENCES
In Brief: Personal use of and need for social media in relation to...
Overall, 18.1 percent of Americans agreed that “I like to voice my political
opinions via social media and want politician...
Today’s members of the
middle and professional classes
wonder daily what the new normal
will be. They’re aware, some vague...
The clearest margin of agreement was for the statement “Candidates should take an active role in social media.” A very
cle...
28 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
Americans are looking more closely
and more critically than ever at the
public i...
HEALTH CARE
In Brief: On the thorny issue of health-care reform, the mood of Americans tended to be against it, especially...
GENERAL PUBLIC ISSUES
INTEREST, PART I
In Brief: Americans have been taking more interest in a range of public issues over...
Net overall interest in health care increased by 57.3 percentage points (64.5 percent more interested, 7.2 percent less).
...
32 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
Most striking of all, interest in celebrities has plummeted. Overall, there’s a ...
12
10
8
6
4
2
0
J F M A M J J A S O N D J F M A M J J A S O N D J
2008 2009 2010
Unemployment rate
Jan. 2008-Jan. 2010
SOU...
APPROVAL, PART II
In Brief: In other areas of general interest, there was a tendency toward disapproval, in keeping with t...
People right now are
less pessimistic about the
overall economy…than they
were a year ago. But when
we ask about their per...
MEDIA
ATTENTION PAID TO MEDIA ABOUT POLITICS
In Brief: Traditional media reporting channels still get a lot of Americans’ ...
Reporting from Detroit—On the
city’s east side, where auto workers
once assembled cars by the millions,
nature is taking b...
“You are sitting in the deconstruction of
the American Dream,” he says, indicating
Baltimore. “Which is to say there was a...
Attention was evenly divided for local press columnists (paper or online); 27.5 percent overall paid no attention to them,...
The Great Panic of 2008 may have
destroyed blind optimism. But if
excessive optimism was the near-fatal
pose in 2008, blin...
MEDIA EXPECTATIONS
In Brief: The balance of sentiment toward the media outlook was decidedly negative. As in other areas, ...
42 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
FOOTNOTES
1 http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/11/great-recession-a-brief...
This white paper is the third in a series of thought leadership pursuits by Euro RSCG Worldwide.
In October 2009, Euro RSC...
U.S. Mind and Mood Report
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U.S. Mind and Mood Report

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Case study of trends regarding U.S. mindset and mood in relation to recent events.

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Transcript of "U.S. Mind and Mood Report"

  1. 1. APRIL 2010WHITE PAPER U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
  2. 2. Note on Reporting: Many questions required responses on a five-point scale. To reflect the overall balance of mind and mood as simply and accurately as possible, this report focuses on the margin of difference between responses at the higher end of the scale (4 and 5) and those at the lower end (1 and 2). If, for example, on a given question, 55 percent of respondents selected scalar 4 or 5, 30 percent selected the neutral midpoint scalar 3 and 15 percent selected scalar 1 or 2, then the net margin would be 40 percent (55 percent minus 15 percent). If only 10 percent selected scalar 4 or 5, 50 percent selected scalar 3 and 40 percent selected scalar 1 or 2, the net margin would be -30 percent (10 percent minus 40 percent).
  3. 3. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 3 INTRODUCTION The past decade has been a time of huge mood swings and high emotion in the United States. The Sept. 11 attacks triggered solidarity, anger and anxiety. The invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq turned those feelings into patriotic go-get-’em determination and helped President George W. Bush win a second term in November 2004. The enthusiasm has cooled as Americans continue to face the financial and human costs of the drawn-out conflicts. The “irrational exuberance” identified by former Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan intensified in the consumer and credit boom up until 2007-08. Then the shockwaves of the subprime crisis and subsequent financial crisis hit hard and made everyone seriously scared. Barack Obama’s victory in the 2008 presidential election split the nation between euphoria and resentment; the high hopes of millions rooting for Obama stood in stark contrast to the fears of millions who opposed him. Over the past year or so, there has been plenty to stir up strong feelings.The Great Recession1 has hit jobs hard and squeezed millions of Main Street households. Yet on Wall Street, although mega- fraudster Bernard Madoff went down for 150 years, bailed-out bankers and financiers are in the money again even as the nation plunges deeper into debt. Beyond the polarized Republican-Democrat split of mainstream politics, some Americans have turned to grassroots populism. New York Times columnist David Brooks has compared the right-wing Tea Party movement with the New Left of old; both movements are against “the establishment” and the corrupt structures they see as plotting to control them.2 All these elements have been amplified and fed back through interactive communications in general and social media in particular. These forms of communication have been powerful new factors in the mix, both reflecting and contributing to the current mind and mood of the nation. Euro RSCG Worldwide PR and Euro RSCG Life, the public relations arm and the health-focused communications network of Euro RSCG Worldwide, a leading integrated marketing communications agency, commissioned a Mind and Mood survey to provide a series of snapshots building up over time to track what’s happening both nationally and in the bellwether state of Connecticut. In February 2010, our research partners, MicroDialogue, deployed a survey to a random and representative sample of 386 people age 18 and older residing in the United States along with one to a random and representative sample of 386 people age 18 and older living in Connecticut. We chose Connecticut because of its proximity to Massachusetts—important political territory since the election of Scott Brown to the U.S. Senate—and because Connecticut is itself a political hotbed. We’re convinced the state is the new Illinois: Among other things, constituents there will be choosing a new governor, state attorney general and two U.S. senators between now and 2012, all of which are races being hailed as referendums on Obama and the state of the union. Plus, the state is home to the American insurance industry. Of the two survey samples, 87 percent reported they were registered to vote in the United States and 89 percent in Connecticut. The data is statistically significant for both samples at the 95 percent confidence level with a confidence interval of +/-5.This report offers a summary and overview of the findings of the national survey, along with detailed findings.
  4. 4. Summary of findings In the first quarter of 2010, one year into Barack Obama’s presidency, the mind and mood of Americans is down rather than up, resentful rather than grateful, pessimistic rather than optimistic. They are much less interested in the antics of celebrities and much more interested in things—news, money, jobs, health care— that have a bearing on the basic necessities of their life. HUNKERING DOWN The past 12 to 18 months have certainly been stressful for many Americans and indeed for the nation as a whole. When acute stress arises, people typically respond in one of three ways: fight, flight or freeze. In some respects, the past year to year and a half has been a time of fight, with activity and activism on both sides of the political divide. The Obama election movement stirred a lot of Americans into action, and over the past year the Tea Party movement has galvanized grassroots activism. In the recent Republican primary for Texas governor, for example, Tea Party–supported Rick Perry won the nomination with a big enough margin to avoid a runoff with former U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, with 757,461 votes (51.1 percent) vs. 449,632 (30.3 percent). 4 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
  5. 5. This could indicate that the conservative, anti-Obama, anti-government movement might prove to have a real effect on 2010 elections. Judging by media reports, it might seem that the economic crisis has spurred the nation into a flurry of protesting and community building and volunteering. Yet contrary to what might be expected, Americans overall rate themselves less active now than before. Of the possible activities surveyed, only engagement in faith groups showed a clear net increase (volunteering saw a very slight 0.6 percent rise). This suggests that many Americans have had a freeze response to the stress. The net (self-reported) decrease in activities might well reflect a hunkering-down mentality among many. While some respond to anxiety, unemployment and hard times by reaching out, others respond by turning in on themselves. This is easier than ever now that even downscale homes are equipped with multichannel TV and Internet. Regarding volunteering, the picture is more polarized among men than among women; 23.2 percent of men rated themselves less active, while 20.6 percent rated themselves more active. For women it was 15.1 percent less active and 18.7 percent more active. This suggests that more men have adjusted their volunteering in response to the current situation, either by becoming less active or by becoming more active; in fact, fewer men than women rate their volunteering activity unchanged (56.2 percent vs. 66.1 percent). The data doesn’t reveal the reasons driving this shift. On the “less active” side, it’s likely that men who fear losing their job have been more inclined to put in more time at work, reducing their time for volunteering. On the “more active” side, men who have lost their job might be turning to volunteering to keep themselves busy and feel purposeful. The recession has certainly hit male employment harder; according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, January 2010 unemployment for adult men was 10.0 percent compared with 7.9 percent for adult women.3 PESSIMISM Unlike some European countries, the United States is not a nation that’s comfortable with itself in a down mood. The country was built by people who had confidence that it’s possible to fix problems and make a better tomorrow. The American spirit is “can do,” and Barack Obama’s election mantra was “Yes We Can.” Gloomy and resigned is not part of the American way. So right now is an uncomfortable time for many Americans as they look around at all the basic life indicators—tax levels, cost of living, schooling, employment and health care—with expectations of them getting worse and no sense of how they could be improved. Americans are particularly pessimistic about anything to do with money and finance. While Wall Street has been able to surf back on a tide of bailout money, Americans on Main Street are seeing unemployment looking rocky, budgetary crises engulfing many states and vast government deficits to be financed who knows how. It’s striking, but not unusual, that women consistently net out more pessimistic than men on many issues—local administration, business environment, health, cost of living, quality of life, employment, real estate market, community life. In our experience of surveys over the past eight to nine years, women typically return WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 5
  6. 6. responses that show greater anxiety and greater pessimism than men. This doesn’t necessarily mean women are gloomier; rather, they are less given to flights of gung- ho optimism than men. HEALTH CARE It’s not clear exactly what Americans would like to see regarding health care. What is clear is that many Americans don’t like what they’re seeing now and have been seeing as the tussle over health-care reform has dominated Washington’s attention for the past year. With an apparently anticorporate beef, a big majority of Americans believe corporations and lobbies have hijacked the proposed health-care reform. (Any Americans paying attention to the issue will have noticed the Jan. 21, 2010, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court that allows corporations and unions to spend unlimited amounts of money on advertisements and media buys right up to Election Day.) Yet with an apparently pro-market reflex, a majority of Americans agree, or don’t disagree, that the proposed health-care reforms are “too socialist.” Health care is one of the areas of public life in which ideological fault lines run deep and emotionally charged words or phrases—“death panels,” “socialist,” “single payer,” “government involvement”—are deployed to stampede opinion. It gets more complicated. Health care is also an area of potential political division between men and women. This survey shows that men are more inclined to favor the status quo while women are more inclined to believe things need changing. Men are more inclined to see health care as a privilege, whereas women are more inclined to see it as a right. This may in part reflect the self-described party allegiances in the sample: Of the Republicans, 52.8 percent are men and 47.2 percent are women; of the Democrats, 46 percent are men and 54 percent are women. It might also reflect the fact that even today, women are more likely than men to have a primary caring role (for children and/or parents) and hence are more likely to be dealing with the health-care system concretely. POLITICS Although the election of the first African-American president marked a historic moment of change in the United States, and although Barack Obama himself ran on a platform of change, the events of his first year have led many Americans to wonder whether politicians as a whole are the problem rather than specific parties and people. This survey shows widespread anger with the U.S. political establishment, a common perception that politicians are out of touch and a worryingly pervasive loss of trust in American politics. Americans feel more interested in politics than they were before but less approving of what they’re seeing. This could be because there is more around to disapprove of, but it’s more likely that it’s because political coverage is more polarized. Citizens of any political persuasion—left, right, authoritarian, libertarian, etc.—can seek out news and commentators that not only fit their politics but also highlight the iniquities of their politicians’ opponents. Previous generations could tune in to the impeccably neutral Walter Cronkite, the most trusted man in America, for their news. Now Republicans watch Fox and listen to Glenn Beck while Democrats watch MSNBC and listen to Rachel Maddow. 6 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
  7. 7. One potential bright spot is that, for all their dislike of politicians and politics as practiced in the United States, many have turned their backs on the ideologically driven “culture wars” of recent years. Being squeaky clean is no longer a must-have character trait for politicians—at least in theory.There is an apparent willingness to allow politicians to be “real” (i.e., flawed) and to let pragmatism and competence count for more than ideological purity.Then again, today Americans are cautious. And being a “good family person” is a widespread requirement.This suggests there is still a great deal of ambivalence about private, personal morality, especially in an environment in which political opponents are quick to turn dirty laundry into dirty politics. SOCIAL MEDIA,TRADITIONAL MEDIA AND INFLUENCE Looking at the net numbers from the survey, it’s important to remember that in some fields it doesn’t take a majority or even a large plurality to represent a significant shift.This consideration is important when looking at the numbers relating to social media. A quick glance at the tables shows net negatives, for example, with regard to social media and politics. A massive 62.2 percent have not used social media tools or platforms (e.g.,Twitter and Facebook) to learn more about politics or politicians, and another 24.9 percent are neutral on the issue. At first glance, these and other numbers might seem to refute the game-changing claims that social media boosters have made. However, 12.9 percent overall say they have, and the percentage is even higher (17percent) among 18- to 39-year-olds.These are significantly high percentages for a type of technology and usage that were virtually unknown just five years ago. As part of an overall mix of media contact points, social media is likely to become part of the mainstream. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign was widely hailed as a triumph of new media savvy, but his campaign manager, David Plouffe, is on record as saying the campaign relied heavily on “old school” technology, including TV advertising. The Mind and Mood survey certainly indicates that for political information, more Americans are paying attention to local TV and newspapers than to new media. This should not be taken to mean that interactive media doesn’t count but rather—as Plouffe emphasized—that Americans are best reached by combinations of old and new media. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 7
  8. 8. IMPLICATIONS This is not a time when a resumption of business as usual is likely for many Americans. The country has been shaken more deeply than might seem to be the case by looking at the stock market indices. Wall Street is chipper, but Main Street is hurting and anxious. MISTRUST Although the Sept. 11 attacks were traumatic inasmuch as they involved foreigners attacking on American soil, it did seem clear who the enemy was. Americans rallied round the flag, supported one another, carried on shopping and set off to tackle the Taliban and Saddam Hussein. By contrast, the past two years have probably been far more traumatic and bewildering for most Americans as the ostensibly friendly forces of finance, politics and business have all apparently proved indifferent to their plight. 8 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
  9. 9. The country’s economy has been brought low by “suicide mortgages” sold by Americans to Americans. Wall Street has apparently managed to lose vast amounts of money, get rescued by the government and yet carry on paying itself megabucks while Main Street has faced the prospect of foreclosure, unemployment and no money to fall back on. On the political front, half the country fears the government wants to take over everything, and the other half is disappointed that the Obama administration has been hijacked by vested interests and lost the courage to drive change. The Obama campaign’s “Yes We Can” is ringing hollow at the moment. On the business front, Americans are experiencing a jobless recovery. The economic indicators are ticking up and the recession is officially over, but businesses that were quick to lay off workers have been slow to create new jobs. VOLATILITY With the disappointment and mistrust of politics, banks and business lurking, significant change is possible—although not necessarily in ways desired or designed by those apparently in power. Americans are looking around for ideas, institutions and people they can trust. Who and what will earn that trust remains to be seen. By the fall of 2008, the mood of the nation was set against the outgoing president and his administration; the Democrats swept into the White House and Congress, and political commentators talked of the Republicans being washed up. Yet barely a year later, the shoe was on the other foot when rookie Republican candidate Scott Brown captured the U.S. Senate seat of recently deceased Democrat elder Ted Kennedy. With well over half of respondents actively agreeing that they’ve lost trust in politics as it is practiced in the United States, and less than 20 percent disagreeing, it could be one of those times when Americans decide the whole system needs to be shaken up. Although Barack Obama might have won as an outsider in terms of his ethnicity, with his softly-softly approach in Washington, D.C., he looks to many Americans like another insider. By contrast, Sarah Palin might merely have been ahead of her time with her anti-Washington rhetoric. And amid it all, an openly lesbian woman gets elected mayor in Houston. When the economic crisis went critical in September 2008, even sober people talked of staring into the abyss, of meltdown, of the end of the world as we know it. In most respects those immediate fears proved unfounded. The mind and mood of the American people 18 months later, however, suggests that big changes are still working their way through. To paraphrase the adage about the impact of technology, we routinely overestimate short-term change and underestimate long-term change. The findings of the survey in the context of what’s happening in the United States now indicate that changes triggered by the economic crisis have only just started to make themselves felt. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 9
  10. 10. CHANGES IN ACTIVITY In Brief: In many areas of life, respondents were on balance less active in community activities over the past 12 to 18 months than before. The averages summary in the bottom row shows that the biggest decrease in activity was among the 18-to-39 age cohort. In faith groups, Americans were overall slightly more active, by a margin of 3.6 percent (19.2 percent more active, 15.6 percent less active). Men netted out neutral (0.1 percent), while women tended toward being more active in this area (margin of 7.3 percent). The 18-to-39 cohort tended to be less active, while the over-40 group was more active. Activity in volunteering was barely changed overall, with a slight 0.6 percent overall margin more active. Men netted out less active, by a margin of 2.6 percent, while women netted out more active by a margin of 3.6 percent. The younger cohort netted out marginally less active (1.5 percent) while the older cohort was marginally more active (1.2 percent). Americans haven’t hugely increased their environmental activities over the past 12 to 18 months; almost two-thirds (64.5 percent) rated their activities unchanged, but among the rest, the balance was slightly toward less active, by a margin of 0.8 percent. More men than women were less active with environmental activities (2.1 percent vs. 0.5 percent) and more 18-to-39s than over-40s were less active (net 4.4 percent less active vs. net 1.2 percent more active). In cause-related activism, the tendency to be less active was even more pronounced. Overall, 63.7 percent were neither more nor less active, but among the rest a net margin of 5.6 percent were less active; the margin of less active was narrower among men than among women (net 3.2 percent less active vs. net 8.4 percent less active). The margin of less activity was similar in the younger and older cohorts (5.2 percent and 6.0 percent). Surprisingly, political activities showed an even more pronounced shift toward less activity. While overall almost two- thirds were neither more nor less active (65.8 percent), among the rest the balance was clearly toward less active, by a margin of 6.2 percent (14 percent more active but 20.2 percent less active). The decrease in activity was less pronounced among men than women (net 1.6 percent less vs. net 10.9 percent less) and far more pronounced among the 18-to-39s than among the over-40s (net 14.1 percent less vs. net 2.0 percent less). Community meetings suffered an even bigger decrease in activity, with a margin of 7.8 percent less active over the past 12 to 18 months (66.8 percent unchanged). Both men and women netted out less active by similar margins (8.3 percent and 7.3 percent). Across the age gap, a larger proportion of 18-to-39s than over-40s was less active (net 9.6 percent vs. net 6.8 percent). 10 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Net figures (more active minus less active) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Faith group (church, synagogue, etc.) 3.6% 0.1% 7.3% -1.5% 6.4% Volunteering 0.6% -2.6% 3.6% -1.5% 1.2% Environmental activities -0.8% -2.1% 0.5% -4.4% 1.2% Cause-related activism -5.6% -3.2% -8.4% -5.2% -6.0% Political activities -6.2% -1.6% -10.9% -14.1% -2.0% Community meetings -7.8% -8.3% -7.3% -9.6% -6.8% Average of all rows above -2.7% -3.0% -2.5% -6.1% -1.0% Over the past 12 to 18 months, please rate how much your behavior has changed in the listed areas.
  11. 11. There are many differences between the New Left and the Tea Partiers.… But the similarities are more striking than the differences. To start with, the Tea Partiers have adopted the tactics of the New Left.… But the core commonality is this: Members of both movements believe in what you might call mass innocence. Both movements are built on the assumption that the people are pure and virtuous and that evil is introduced into society by corrupt elites and rotten authority structures. David Brooks The New York Times
  12. 12. LIFE IN GENERAL A LITTLE OPTIMISM In Brief: Americans’ perspectives on many elements of life tended toward the pessimistic. Nevertheless, the balance was optimistic on a few points. The average of net margins in the following table shows that American men are tending to feel more optimistic than American women, who netted out marginally pessimistic overall; the younger cohort of 18-to-39s was more optimistic than the over-40 cohort. 12 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Net figures (optimistic minus pessimistic) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Recreational facilities 7.4% 13.4% 1.6% 15.6% 3.2% Natural environment 6.5% 14.5% -1.6% 7.4% 6.0% Entertainment 5.0% 9.3% 0.5% 15.6% -0.8% Personal security 3.9% 10.8% -3.2% 5.2% 3.6% Community life 3.6% 6.1% 1.0% 7.4% 1.2% Average of all rows above 5.3% 10.8% -0.3% 10.2% 2.6% With regard to various aspects of life where you live now, how hopeful are you about them in the foreseeable future?
  13. 13. Even in a down economy, there are plenty of options for entertainment and recreation, and this was reflected in the balance of optimism about them. They netted out with respondents being optimistic by a margin of 7.4 percent on the prospects for recreational facilities.The optimism wasn’t equally spread around, however. Men netted out more optimistic than women (13.4 percent vs. 1.6 percent), and the younger 18-to-39 cohort netted out more optimistic than the older cohort (15.6 percent vs. 3.2 percent). Similarly, with entertainment, the overall net margin of optimism was 5.0 percent, with men more optimistic than women (net 9.3 percent vs. net 0.5 percent); the younger cohort was net more optimistic, by a margin of 15.6 percent, than the older cohort, which came down slightly on the pessimistic side (net 0.8 percent). Possibly the most surprising balance of optimism was about the natural environment. The overall balance was optimistic by a margin of 6.5 percent (24.4 percent optimistic, 17.9 percent pessimistic). However, there was a clear gender divide on this; men netted out optimistic by a margin of 14.5 percent, while women netted out marginally pessimistic (1.6 percent). The younger 18-to-39 cohort netted out marginally more optimistic than the over-40s (7.4 percent vs. 6.0 percent). Respondents were also net optimistic about personal security, by a margin of 3.9 percent. As is usually the case on questions relating to security, though, women were less optimistic than men. Men netted out optimistic by a margin of 10.8 percent, whereas women netted out pessimistic by a margin of 3.2 percent. Across the age divide, the 18-to-39s were more optimistic on balance than the over-40s (margins of 5.2 percent and 3.6 percent). Despite the talk of social isolation and “bowling alone,” there was net optimism about community life, albeit by a narrow margin of 3.6 percent. Men were more optimistic than women (6.1 percent vs. 1.0 percent), and the younger cohort netted out more optimistic than the older cohort (7.4 percent vs. 1.2 percent). WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 13
  14. 14. The Great Recession may be over, but this era of high joblessness is probably just beginning. Before it ends, it will likely change the life course and character of a generation of young adults. It will leave an indelible imprint on many blue-collar men. It could cripple marriage as an institution in many communities. It may already be plunging many inner cities into a despair not seen for decades. Ultimately, it is likely to warp our politics, our culture, and the character of our society for years to come. 14 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Don Peck The Atlantic
  15. 15. A LOT OF PESSIMISM In Brief: On many points, particularly related to money, Americans tended to net out far more pessimistic than optimistic. As the last row shows, women were almost twice as pessimistic as men, and over-40s were more than twice as pessimistic as 18-to-39s. Sentiment was only marginally net pessimistic on local administration (net pessimistic 1.5 percent) and transportation (net pessimistic 2.3 percent). On quality of life, pessimism weighed more strongly (5.5 percent). The health-care debate hasn’t spread confidence about the future of health- care facilities—quite the reverse, in fact. Net pessimism prevailed by a margin of 7.0 percent, with women showing significantly more pessimism (net 14.1 percent). With the recession turning into a jobless recovery, employment prospects stirred a clear margin of pessimism overall (11.9 percent); over-40 respondents were much more pessimistic than 18-to-39 respondents (net 17.2 percent vs. net 3.0 percent pessimistic). Respondents were even more pessimistic about the real estate market, with a net margin of 18.5 percent pessimistic. However, clearer, deeper pessimism was expressed with regard to the cost of living, with a wide margin of 34.2 percent feeling pessimistic about it (17.1 percent were optimistic and 51.3 percent were pessimistic). The deepest pessimism was about taxation levels, where the margin of pessimism was a massive 39.4 percent (11.6 percent were optimistic and 51.0 percent were pessimistic). WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 15 Net figures (optimistic minus pessimistic) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Local administration -1.5% 5.1% -8.3% -2.2% -1.2% Transportation -2.3% 0.5% -5.2% 8.1% -7.6% Quality of life -5.5% 1.1% -11.9% 0.0% -8.8% Business environment -6.4% -3.6% -9.4% -8.9% -5.2% Health-care facilities -7.0% 0.0% -14.1% -4.4% -8.4% Employment -11.9% -8.3% -15.7% -3.0% -17.2% Schools -13.2% -12.9% -13.5% -3.0% -19.2% Real estate market -18.5% -15.0% -21.9% -11.1% -22.8% Cost of living -34.2% -22.7% -45.8% -27.4% -38.0% Taxation levels -39.4% -39.7% -39.1% -28.9% -45.6% Average of all rows above -14.0% -9.6% -18.5% -8.1% -17.4% With regard to various aspects of life where you live now, how hopeful are you about them in the foreseeable future?
  16. 16. POLITICS POLITICAL PERSPECTIVES In Brief: The mood around major political issues in the United States was undoubtedly not positive. There was a clear mood of anger and mistrust, and it was stronger among men than among women. 16 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Net figures (positive=agreement, negative=disagreement) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Americans are angry with the political establishment. 63.4% 67.5% 59.3% 45.2% 73.6% American politicians are too far removed from everyday realities. 54.7% 62.4% 46.8% 45.9% 59.2% Hoping for a complete change of politics in my state. 34.4% 40.2% 28.7% 29.6% 36.8% I have lost trust in politics as it is practiced in the United States. 32.4% 40.2% 24.5% 31.1% 32.8% I am in favor of continued U.S. military engagement in Afghanistan. -5.4% 7.7% -18.8% -7.4% -4.8% Please rate your agreement or disagreement with the following statements using this scale (1-5).
  17. 17. We place trust in these politicians every time we pull the lever in November. And yet we are so easily betrayed. In every other area of life, trust is not easily obtained and very simple to lose. And once broken, it’s virtually impossible to regain. However, that doesn’t seem to slow down the increase of failure we experience every day in American politics. Craig R. Smith WorldNetDaily WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 17
  18. 18. There was overwhelming net agreement with the statement “Americans are angry with the political establishment” by a margin of 63.4 percent (68.9 percent agreed, 5.5 percent disagreed). There was a net margin of agreement of 54.7 percent that American politicians are too far removed from everyday realities (overall, 66.1 percent agreed and 11.4 percent disagreed). The margin of agreement was greater among men than among women (62.4 percent vs. 46.8 percent). A clear net margin of 34.4 percent was hoping for a complete change of politics in their state; 50.2 percent agreed and just 15.8 percent disagreed. The margin of hope was considerably wider among men than among women (40.2 percent vs. 28.7 percent). Similarly large margins agreed with the statement “I have lost trust in politics as it is practiced in the United States”; overall a net 32.4 percent agreed (51.8 percent agreed and 19.4 percent disagreed). Here too the margin of agreement was much bigger among men than among women (40.2 percent vs. 24.5 percent). The balance of opinion tilted negative on the statement “I am in favor of continued U.S. military engagement in Afghanistan,” with a small 5.4 percent margin of disagreement (31.4 percent agreed, 36.8 percent disagreed). This was a point that split opinion across the gender divide; men agreed by a net margin of 7.7 percent, while women disagreed by a net margin of 18.8 percent. INTEREST IN POLITICS In Brief: There has been a clear net increase in Americans’ interest in politics. Home state politics have seen the biggest growth in interest, followed by domestic politics in general. The averages row at the bottom of the table shows that far more men than women and far more older than younger Americans have become more interested in politics. Over the past 12 to 18 months, there has been a sharply increased level of interest in the politics of respondents’ states of residence; net 39.2 percent overall are more interested (51.3 percent more vs. 12.1 percent less). There’s a big difference between men and women (men net 47.9 percent and women net 30.2 percent). Both younger and older cohorts show increased net interest, but it’s much stronger among over-40s than among 18-to-39s (48.4 percent vs. 22.2 percent). Over the past year to year and a half, there has also been a large increased level of interest in domestic politics in general. Net 33.4 percent overall are more interested (46.1 percent more vs. 12.7 percent less). There’s a big difference between Net figures (positive=more interested, negative=less interested) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Politics in the state where I live 39.2% 47.9% 30.2% 22.2% 48.4% Domestic politics in general 33.4% 42.3% 24.5% 21.5% 40.0% Politics in my local area 23.1% 29.4% 16.7% 10.4% 30.0% Politics in other American states 16.4% 23.1% 9.4% 5.2% 22.4% Local politics in other areas 2.3% 10.8% -6.2% -5.2% 6.4% Average of all rows above 22.9% 30.7% 14.9% 10.8% 29.4% Over the past 12 to 18 months, please rate how much your interest has changed in the listed areas. 18 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
  19. 19. men and women (men net 42.3 percent and women net 24.5 percent). In the over-40 age cohort, the net increase was 40 percent, whereas it was just 21.5 percent among the 18-to-39s. Over the past 12 to 18 months, there has been a net increase of interest of 23.1 points in the politics of respondents’ local area (38.1 percent more interested, 15.0 percent less interested). The net increase has been greater among men than among women (net 29.4 percent vs. net 16.7 percent). Over-40s registered a greater net increase than under-40s (net 30 percent vs. net 10.4 percent). There has also been a clear but smaller increase of interest in the politics of other American states, up by net 16.4 percent. Here, too, men showed a greater increase than women (net 23.1 percent vs. net 9.4 percent), and over-40s showed a higher net increase than 18-to-39s (net 22.4 percent vs. net 5.2 percent). Interest in the local politics of other areas has risen by net 10.8 percent among men but declined by net 6.2 percent among women. The 18-to-39 group showed a net decrease in interest (5.2 percent), whereas the over-40s showed a small net increase (6.4 percent). APPROVAL OF POLITICS In Brief: The red negative net margins across the whole table show that Americans’ feelings about politics at every level tended to be disapproving. Women netted out consistently more disapproving than men. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 19 Net figures (positive=more approving, negative=more disapproving) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Politics in my local area -7.9% -1.5% -14.6% -12.6% -5.6% Local politics in other areas -15.3% -11.3% -19.2% -19.3% -13.2% Politics in the state where I live -16.6% -13.9% -19.3% -17.0% -16.8% Politics in other American states -20.8% -15.0% -26.5% -21.5% -20.8% Domestic politics in general -21.6% -16.9% -26.0% -17.0% -24.4% Average of all rows above -16.4% -11.7% -21.1% -17.5% -16.2% Compared with the past 12 to 18 months, please rate your current feeling about the listed areas.
  20. 20. 20 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT In the wake of the implosion of nearly all sources of American authority, this new decade will have to be about reforming our institutions to reconstitute a more reliable and democratic form of authority. Scholarly research shows a firm correlation between strong institutions, accountable élites and highly functional economies; mistrust and corruption, meanwhile, feed each other in a vicious circle. If our current crisis continues, we risk a long, ugly process of de- development: higher levels of corruption and tax evasion and an increasingly fractured public sphere, in which both public consensus and reform become all but impossible. Christopher Hayes Time
  21. 21. Disapproval has grown over the period; net 21.6 percent rate themselves more disapproving of domestic politics in general (17.3 percent more approving vs. 38.9 percent more disapproving). As on many other topics, the greater disapproval of men was exceeded by the larger numbers of women registering more disapproval (net 16.9 percent vs. net 26.0 percent). The younger 18-to-39 cohort netted out more disapproving, although not as much as the older cohort of over-40s (net 17.0 percent vs. 24.4 percent). Net greater disapproval of domestic politics was significantly stronger among self-identified Republicans with net 26.5 percent more disapproving; among self-identified Democrats net disapproval was 3.2 percent, and among Independents it was net 33.6 percent. In local politics overall, there was a net 7.9 percent rating themselves more disapproving (20.5 percent more approving but 28.4 percent more disapproving). There was less net disapproval among men than among women (net 1.5 percent vs. net 14.6 percent) but more net disapproval among 18-to-39s than among over-40s (net 12.6 percent vs. net 5.6 percent). With greater interest in state politics has come greater disapproval. The overall balance of feeling was clearly negative, with net 16.6 percent rating themselves more disapproving (22.3 percent more approving and 38.9 percent more disapproving). As on other issues, women netted out with higher levels disapproving than men (net 13.9 percent of men disapproving vs. net 19.3 percent of women). There was little difference between the age cohorts on this point, with net disapproval of 17.0 percent from 18-to-39s and net 16.8 percent from over-40s. There was slightly more net disapproval of politics in other American states; overall, net 20.8 percent rated themselves more disapproving (12.4 percent more approving vs. 33.2 percent more disapproving). Significantly more women than men were more disapproving (net 26.5 percent of women vs. net 15.0 percent of men). Across the age divide, there was little difference in net increased disapproval between 18-to-39s and over-40s (net 21.5 percent vs. net 20.8 percent). EXPECTATIONS OF POLITICS In Brief: Just like the nation’s finances, the balance of expectations in the political sphere is a sea of red—in this case, indicating net negative expectations. Unlike in a number of other categories, men netted out more negative than women. Both age cohorts netted out with negative expectations, but the numbers were much larger in the over-40s cohort. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 21 Net figures (positive expectations minus negative expectations) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 City mayor -3.8% -2.2% -5.7% -3.7% -4.4% Attorney general -8.8% -11.9% -5.8% -3.7% -11.6% State senator -9.3% -13.4% -5.3% -4.4% -12.4% President of the United States -11.0% -13.0% -8.8% 0.7% -17.6% Congressman -14.0% -18.6% -9.4% -8.9% -16.8% State governor -15.9% -19.6% -12.0% -10.4% -19.2% Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board -17.9% -20.0% -15.6% -9.6% -22.4% Treasury secretary -21.0% -23.7% -18.2% -9.6% -27.2% Average of all rows above -12.7% -15.3% -10.1% -6.2% -16.5% Looking ahead, what are your expectations for the following institutions, offices and functions with regard to the business environment where you live?
  22. 22. No official enjoys a balance of positive expectations. The least negative expectations are for the city mayor, with a net negative margin of 3.8 percent (positive 19.7 percent, negative 23.5 percent). The attorney general suffered slightly more negative expectations, with a net negative margin of 8.8 percent (positive 16.6 percent, negative 25.4 percent). The president of the United States, one troubled year into his four-year term, netted a negative expectation margin of 11.0 percent; this rating was more polarized than many, with 29.7 percent positive, 40.7 percent negative and 29.5 percent neutral. Looking at self-declared party affiliations: • Republicans returned 69.8 percent negative vs. 12.3 percent positive expectations. • Democrats returned 11.3 percent negative vs. 54.1 percent positive expectations. • Independents returned 45.6 percent negative vs. 27.7 percent positive expectations. The most negative expectations are for the officials dealing with the nation’s finances. The chairman of the Federal Reserve Board earned net negative expectations of 17.9 percent (positive 15.0 percent, negative 32.9 percent), while the Treasury secretary suffered the most negative expectations with a net margin of 21 percent (10.9 percent positive, 31.9 percent negative). POLITICAL CANDIDATES: PERSONAL ISSUES In Brief: Despite all continual furors over politicians’ personal lives, Americans tend to think political candidates too are human. They tend to be forgiving of human failings. 22 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Net figures (positive=agreement, negative=disagreement) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Our candidates can be real people; they don’t have to be perfect. 70.5% 71.2% 69.7% 60.0% 76.0% Candidates need to be right for jobs— that means we can be flexible in the 49.0% 53.6% 44.2% 43.7% 51.6% mores we expect from them. A good candidate must be a good family person. 45.2% 46.4% 43.7% 43.0% 46.4% We need our candidates to live impeccable lives. -13.9% -5.2% -22.9% -24.4% -8.4% I would not be comfortable with a candidate whose spouse is a recovering addict. -21.8% -22.7% -20.9% -19.3% -23.2% I would not be comfortable with a candidate whose child is a recovering addict. -27.7% -24.7% -30.6% -20.0% -32.4% Please rate your agreement or disagreement with the following statements using this scale (1-5).
  23. 23. There was a massive 70.5 percent margin of agreement that “Our candidates can be real people; they don’t have to be perfect” (75.4 percent agreed and only 4.9 percent disagreed). A more pragmatic than “cultural” perspective was apparent from the big 49.0 percent margin of agreement that “Candidates need to be right for jobs—that means we can be flexible in the mores we expect from them,” although men embraced this idea more than women (net 53.6 percent vs. net 44.2 percent). On moralizing, judgmental criteria, net disagreement prevailed. Americans disagreed by a margin of 13.9 percent that “We need our candidates to live impeccable lives”; the relatively narrow margin was due to the fact that although 40.1 percent disagreed, a relatively large 26.2 percent agreed. Overall, 18.9 percent agreed they wouldn’t be comfortable with a candidate whose spouse is a recovering addict, but 40.7 percent disagreed, making for a net disagreement of 21.8 percent. The margin of disagreement was even bigger (27.7 percent) for the statement “I would not be comfortable with a candidate whose child is a recovering addict.” Nevertheless, while a substantial 43.5 percent disagreed, there were still 15.8 percent who agreed. Whatever else happens in a candidate’s life, it’s apparently important that they should be a good family person. Overall, Americans agreed that “A good candidate must be a good family person” by a margin of 45.2 percent, with little variation between the sexes or the age cohorts. Only 9.0 percent disagreed with the notion, while 54.2 percent agreed with it. POLITICAL CANDIDATES: OTHER ISSUES Maybe President Obama’s community activities set a precedent; there was clear net agreement of 61.1 percent with the statement “I believe candidates must be actively engaged in the community before they decide to run for office” (66.1 percent agreed, 5.0 percent disagreed). The older cohort of over-40s agreed by the widest margin (67.6 percent). Americans were also in clear net agreement that “Candidates shouldn’t take private financing,” by a margin of net 34.2 percent; almost half (47.9 percent) agreed and just 13.7 percent disagreed. Despite the clear disapproval of the political class in America, and despite the clear opinion that politicians are out of touch with the reality of most people’s lives, there was surprisingly strong net disagreement of 26.2 percent that “Only seat-of-the-pants politicians such as Sarah Palin really understand the American people.” Nevertheless, while almost half disagreed (49.2 percent), almost a quarter agreed (23.0 percent); even among self-declared Democrats, 12.9 percent agreed. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 23 Net figures (positive=agreement, negative=disagreement) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 I believe candidates must be actively engaged in the community before 61.1% 59.3% 63.0% 49.6% 67.6% they decide to run for office. Candidates shouldn’t take private financing. 34.2% 32.5% 35.9% 36.3% 33.2% Only seat-of-the-pants politicians such as Sarah Palin really understand -26.2% -22.2% -30.2% -29.6% -24.4% the American people. Please rate your agreement or disagreement with the following statements using this scale (1-5).
  24. 24. POLITICS AND SOCIAL MEDIA: PERSONAL USE AND PREFERENCES In Brief: Personal use of and need for social media in relation to politics was still very much a minority need, as shown by the net negative numbers in the table. However, the minorities responding positively were still consistently between 10 percent and 20 percent, which represents large numbers of Americans. 24 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Net figures (positive=agreement, negative=disagreement) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 I like to voice my political opinions via social media and -15.9% -7.2% -24.5% -1.5% -24.0% want politicians to listen. I would like to have more open dialogues with politicians via social media. -16.5% -7.8% -25.6% -3.7% -23.6% I would like to have ongoing communication with my local -18.0% -6.7% -29.7% -4.4% -25.6% politicians via social media. I have used social media tools/ platforms (i.e., Twitter, Facebook, etc.) -49.3% -46.3% -52.1% -26.7% -61.6% to learn more about politics/politicians. Please rate your agreement or disagreement with the following statements using this scale (1-5).
  25. 25. Overall, 18.1 percent of Americans agreed that “I like to voice my political opinions via social media and want politicians to listen,” whereas 34.0 percent disagreed, making for a disagreement margin of 15.9 percent. Even so, that 18.1 percent represents a large number of Americans who are interested in expressing their politics through social media; 22.7 percent of men are, compared with 13.5 percent of women. “I would like to have more open dialogues with politicians via social media” nets a disagreement margin of 16.5 percent, but behind that are 24.2 percent of men and 17.7 percent of women who would like it. Across the age cohorts, 22.2 percent of the 18-to-39s and 20.4 percent of the over-40s are keen on it. Much the same applies to the statement “I would like to have ongoing communication with my local politicians via social media,” which returned a net disagreement margin of 18.0 percent. A substantial 23.2 percent of men actually agreed with the statement, as did 9.4 percent of women. Similar proportions of 18-to-39s and over-40s agreed on the statement (17.8 percent and 15.6 percent, respectively). There was very clear disagreement, however, about using social media as a source of political background information. The statement “I have used social media tools/platforms (i.e., Twitter, Facebook, etc.) to learn more about politics/politicians” yielded a very emphatic 49.3 percent margin of disagreement. This wide margin came from 62.2 percent of respondents specifically disagreeing; 12.9 percent agreed. SOCIAL MEDIA IMPERATIVES FOR POLITICIANS In Brief: While the sample as a whole definitely wasn’t a social media fan base, it was overall in favor of politicians using social media. It was not, however, in favor of them using specific social media platforms. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 25 Net figures (positive=agreement, negative=disagreement) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Candidates should take an active role in social media. 30.7% 35.0% 26.1% 25.9% 32.8% Politicians should use social media as a tool, but only in moderation. 29.8% 27.8% 31.8% 28.1% 30.4% A politician’s use of social media signals a desire to connect with 20.0% 23.1% 16.7% 23.0% 18.4% a younger generation. If a politician is active across social media, it signals a desire to engage. 16.0% 20.6% 11.5% 14.1% 16.8% Politicians should connect with supporters via Twitter. -33.4% -28.4% -38.5% -11.1% -46.0% It is important for politicians to maintain a Facebook page. -37.8% -33.4% -42.1% -21.5% -47.2% Please rate your agreement or disagreement with the following statements regarding politics and social media.
  26. 26. Today’s members of the middle and professional classes wonder daily what the new normal will be. They’re aware, some vaguely, others acutely, that during this period— the most chastening experience in their lives—their families’ habits and attitudes are changing both conspicuously and imperceptibly. They chew over what further adjustments are prudent; they worry over what additional ones may become necessary. And perhaps most disquietingly, they speculate whether the adjustments they’ve made in the face of unprecedented uncertainty—and whether that uncertainty itself— will become enduring features of their lives. Benjamin Schwarz The Atlantic 26 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
  27. 27. The clearest margin of agreement was for the statement “Candidates should take an active role in social media.” A very clear 30.7 percent margin of agreement reflected a significant 37.1 percent who agreed and just 6.4 percent who disagreed—plus a majority of 56.5 percent who were neutral. There was a similar margin for the statement “Politicians should use social media as a tool, but only in moderation,” with net agreement of 29.8 percent. Overall, 39.9 percent agreed and 10.1 percent disagreed. What does it mean when politicians use social media? A hefty 34.2 percent of respondents agreed that a politician’s use of social media signals a desire to connect with a younger generation, while 14.2 percent disagreed, making for a net agreement margin of 20.0 percent. In the younger 18-to-39 age cohort, 31.9 percent agreed while only 8.9 percent disagreed. There was also clear but less emphatic net agreement (16.0 percent) that “If a politician is active across social media, it signals a desire to engage.” The margin of net agreement was far wider among men than among women (20.6 percent vs. 11.5 percent); similar percentages disagreed (13.4 percent and 13.5 percent), but more men than women agreed (34.0 percent vs. 25.0 percent). Opinion clearly netted out against the notion that politicians should connect with supporters via Twitter; the margin of net disagreement was an emphatic 33.4 percent, with overall 43.5 percent disagreeing and 10.1 percent agreeing. Rejection of the idea was less emphatic among 18-to-39s; 25.2 percent of them disagreed with it, but 14.1 percent agreed. Although Iranian presidential candidate Mir Hossein Mousavi famously maintained a Facebook page, Americans didn’t think it is important for politicians to do so, by a margin of 37.8 percent; 48.4 percent disagreed that it was important while 10.6 percent agreed that it was important. Almost twice as many men as women agreed it was important (14.0 percent vs. 7.3 percent), and almost twice as many 18-to-39s as over-40s agreed (14.8 percent vs. 8.0 percent). WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 27
  28. 28. 28 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Americans are looking more closely and more critically than ever at the public issues that affect them, and no issue is more pressing—or confusing—than health-care reform. Clarity will become more apparent now that we are entering a brave new world in the health-care space, as reforms begin to be realized and new leaders emerge as a consequence of the widespread reforms. 28 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Donna Murphy Worldwide Managing Partner Euro RSCG Life
  29. 29. HEALTH CARE In Brief: On the thorny issue of health-care reform, the mood of Americans tended to be against it, especially men. Men were consistently more down on health-care reform than women were, and keener on the status quo. The mood around health-care reform was clearly negative in many respects, with some conflict of opinions apparent. On one hand, there was a large 52.9 percent margin of overall agreement that “Big corporations and lobbies have hijacked the proposed health-care reform” (61.7 percent agreed, 8.8 percent disagreed). On the other hand, there was a sizable margin of 19.2 percent net agreement that “The proposed health-care reform is too socialist for my liking” (44.9 percent agreed, 25.7 percent disagreed); men agreed by a wider net margin than women. Political pundits thought the surprise Republican victory in the Massachusetts Senate race would scupper the health-care reform package, and the balance of survey opinion hoped so. There was overall agreement with a 12.2 percent net margin to the statement “I hope the Massachusetts Senate result stops the health-care reform from going through” (41.2 percent agreed, 29.0 percent disagreed). On the statement “My/our personal health-care situation is fine—hands off, it ain’t broke,” men netted out with a much stronger margin of agreement than women (net 14.9 percent vs. net 2.6 percent).The gap was even bigger across the age divide, with 18-to-39s netting out disagreement of 7.4 percent, while over-40s netted to an agreement margin of 17.6 percent. A clear ideological divide between men and women was apparent with the statement “Health care is a privilege, not a right.” Men netted out in clear agreement by a margin of 11.8 percent (44.3 percent agreed, 32.5 percent disagreed), while women netted out even more clearly in disagreement by a margin of 22.4 percent (26.0 percent agreed, but 48.4 percent disagreed). Finally, the sample delivered an overall thumbs-down to the notion that “The health-care reform package is good for me/my family”; the net margin of disagreement was 16.1 percent, with 27.4 agreeing but 43.5 percent disagreeing. The cohort of over- 40s felt particularly strongly on this point, with net disagreement of 21.6 percent. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 29 Net figures (positive=agreement, negative=disagreement) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Big corporations and lobbies have hijacked the proposed health-care reform. 52.9% 53.0% 52.6% 42.2% 58.4% The proposed health-care reform is too socialist for my liking. 19.2% 23.2% 15.1% 14.8% 21.6% I hope the Massachusetts Senate result stops the health-care reform from going through. 12.2% 19.1% 5.2% 4.4% 16.4% My/our personal health-care situation is fine—hands off, it ain’t broke. 8.9% 14.9% 2.6% -7.4% 17.6% Health care is a privilege, not a right. -5.2% 11.8% -22.4% -17.0% 1.6% The health-care reform package is good for me/my family. -16.1% -17.5% -14.5% -5.9% -21.6% Please rate your agreement or disagreement with the following statements using this scale (1-5).
  30. 30. GENERAL PUBLIC ISSUES INTEREST, PART I In Brief: Americans have been taking more interest in a range of public issues over the past 12 to 18 months. Men in particular tended to rate themselves more interested. Overall interest in the economy and finance increased by net 57.8 percentage points over the past 12 to 18 months (65.0 percent more interested, 7.2 percent less). The net increase has been stronger among men than among women (63.4 percent vs. 52.1 percent). Net increased interest among over-40s was greater than among 18-to-39s (61.2 percent vs. 51.9 percent). 30 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Net figures (positive=more interested, negative=less interested) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Economy and finance 57.8% 63.4% 52.1% 51.9% 61.2% Health care 57.3% 61.4% 53.2% 48.1% 62.4% International affairs 30.3% 40.7% 19.7% 17.8% 37.2% Business and corporations 29.3% 42.3% 16.0% 28.1% 30.0% Average of all rows above 43.7% 52.0% 35.3% 36.5% 47.7% Over the past 12 to 18 months, please rate how much your interest has changed in the listed areas.
  31. 31. Net overall interest in health care increased by 57.3 percentage points (64.5 percent more interested, 7.2 percent less). As on many other points, more men than women said they’ve become more interested over the past 12 to 18 months (net 61.4 percent of men are more interested vs. net 53.2 percent of women). The over-40s cohort registered much more net increased interest than the 18-to-39 cohort (net 62.4 percent vs. net 48.1 percent). Overall interest in international affairs has increased by net 30.3 percent (44.3 percent more interested, 14.0 percent less). There’s a huge difference between men and women, however: Men netted out with 40.7 percent more interested, whereas women netted out with a much lower 19.7 percent more interested. Net interest increased a little among the 18-to-39 cohort but much more among the over-40s (net 17.8 percent vs. net 37.2 percent). Net overall interest in business and corporations increased by 29.3 percent points (43.8 percent more interested, 14.5 percent less). There’s a gulf across the gender divide; net 42.3 percent of men are more interested vs. net 16.0 percent of women. In the age divide, there’s little difference in net increase between the 18-to-39s and the over-40s (net 28.1 percent vs. net 30.0 percent). INTEREST, PART II In Brief: Interest in general news has soared, along with interest in the Internet as a key medium of delivery. Interest in celebrity has nose-dived. The past 12 to 18 months have seen a strong 37.6 percent net increase of interest in the news in general (46.4 percent more, 8.8 percent less). There’s more increased interest among men than women (net 44.3 percent vs. net 30.8 percent) and slightly more among 18-to-39s than among over-40s (10.4 percent vs. 8.0 percent). Over the same period, there has been a clear increase of interest in the Internet, which netted out at 27.4 percent (39.9 percent more interested, 12.5 percent less).There’s a greater net increase among men than among women (36.6 percent vs. 18.3 percent) and a slightly greater net increase among over-40s compared with 18-to-39s (29.6 percent vs. 23.7 percent). Social media sits on the borderline between more and less interest. Overall, there was a small net 1.2 percent decline of interest (23.4 percent more interested vs. 24.6 percent less interested). Across the gender gap, however, there has been a small net 2.6 percent increase of interest among men compared with a slightly larger 5.3 percent net decrease of interest among women. There’s a clear difference across the age divide: Net 12.6 percent of 18-to-39s were more interested, but net 8.8 percent of over-40s were less interested. Possibly as a result of the increasing interest in the Internet, there has been a small net decline of interest in television of 5.5 percent. There’s little difference between the net decline among men and women (4.1 percent and 6.7 percent, respectively). There’s a bigger difference between younger and older respondents: The 18-to-39 group netted 3.0 percent more interested in television, while the over-40 cohort netted out 10.0 percent less interested. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 31 Net figures (positive=more interested, negative=less interested) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 News in general 37.6% 44.3% 30.8% 29.6% 42.0% Internet 27.4% 36.6% 18.3% 23.7% 29.6% Social media -1.2% 2.6% -5.3% 12.6% -8.8% Television -5.5% -4.1% -6.7% 3.0% -10.0% Celebrities -36.6% -39.7% -33.4% -20.7% -45.2% Over the past 12 to 18 months, please rate how much your interest has changed in the listed areas.
  32. 32. 32 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Most striking of all, interest in celebrities has plummeted. Overall, there’s a net 36.6 percent of Americans rating themselves less interested (48.2 percent less interested vs. 11.6 percent more). There’s a net decline in interest of 45.2 percent among over-40s, and even among the younger 18-to-39 cohort there’s a net decline of 20.7 percent. APPROVAL, PART I In Brief: In the four areas of general public interest, Americans’ feelings have turned net negative. Although more men than women declared themselves more interested on these issues, more women consistently declared themselves disapproving. And on every point, the over-40s were more disapproving than the 18-to-39s. Net disapproval of international affairs was strong at overall 23.0 percent (14.8 percent more approving and 37.8 percent more disapproving). As on other topics, significantly more women than men netted out disapproving (15.5 percent of men, 30.7 percent of women). The younger 18-to-39 cohort registered clear disapproval, but not as strongly as the older cohort of over-40s (17.8 percent vs. 26.0 percent). Feelings about health care have moved more toward disapproval, with overall net 27.5 percent more disapproving (18.6 percent more approving, 46.1 more disapproving). There’s a striking difference in the weight of disapproval between men and women, with net 18.0 percent of men disapproving vs. net 37.0 percent of women. More of the over-40 cohort than of the 18-to-39 cohort disapproves (net 30.0 percent vs. net 23.7 percent). There was clear net disapproval of business and corporations, by a wide overall margin of 35.7 percent (12.7 percent more approving, 48.4 percent more disapproving). Significantly more women than men netted out disapproving (31.0 percent of men, 40.6 percent of women); across the age divide, only a slightly lower net proportion of 18-to-39s than over-40s were more disapproving of business and corporations (33.3 percent vs. 37.6 percent). Feelings about the economy and finance have shifted strongly negative, with overall net 37.3 percent more disapproving (15.8 percent more approving and 53.1 percent more disapproving). Net greater disapproval was far larger among women than men (net 45.4 percent vs. net 29.4 percent). The younger 18-to-39 cohort netted out with many disapproving, but the over-40s cohort was even more strongly negative (net 34.1 percent and net 39.6 percent). Net figures (positive=more approving, negative=more disapproving) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 International affairs -23.0% -15.5% -30.7% -17.8% -26.0% Health care -27.5% -18.0% -37.0% -23.7% -30.0% Business and corporations -35.7% -31.0% -40.6% -33.3% -37.6% Economy and finance -37.3% -29.4% -45.4% -34.1% -39.6% Average of all rows above -30.9% -23.5% -38.4% -27.2% -33.3% Compared with the past 12 to 18 months, please rate your current feeling about the listed areas.
  33. 33. 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 J F M A M J J A S O N D J F M A M J J A S O N D J 2008 2009 2010 Unemployment rate Jan. 2008-Jan. 2010 SOURCE: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Unemployment Rate (in Percent) WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 33
  34. 34. APPROVAL, PART II In Brief: In other areas of general interest, there was a tendency toward disapproval, in keeping with the generally down and negative mood. Against the tide of disapproval, feelings about the Internet are more approving on balance. The overall more approving margin was 15.2 percent (13.8 percent less approving, 29.0 percent more approving); it was far wider among men than among women (22.8 percent vs. 7.8 percent). Both the younger and the older cohorts netted out more approving, with similar margins (14.8 percent and 15.2 percent). For news in general, feelings of disapproval prevailed by a margin of 5.0 percent (more approving, 19.1 percent; more disapproving, 24.1 percent). More women than men felt disapproving (men net 1.0 percent, women net 8.9 percent). The margin of disapproval was wider among the 18-to-39s than among the over-40s (9.6 percent vs. 2.4 percent). The margin of disapproval for television was a slightly wider 11.6 percent (16.9 percent more approving, 28.5 percent more disapproving). Men netted out more disapproving than women with a margin of 14.5 percent to 8.9 percent. The younger cohort was only marginally more disapproving, by 2.2 percent, whereas the margin was much wider with the older cohort (17.2 percent). The clearest negative feelings were focused on celebrities. Overall, net disapproval was 36.5 percent (just 7.0 percent more approving and 43.5 percent less approving). Net disapproval was particularly strong among men (45.3 percent) but among women, too (27.6 percent). Disapproval was strong among the 18-to-39s (net 22.2 percent) but much stronger— with net twice as many—among the over-40s (44.4 percent). 34 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Net figures (positive=more approving, negative=more disapproving) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Internet 15.2% 22.8% 7.8% 14.8% 15.2% News in general -5.0% -1.0% -8.9% -9.6% -2.4% Television -11.6% -14.5% -8.9% -2.2% -17.2% Celebrities -36.5% -45.3% -27.6% -22.2% -44.4% Compared with the past 12 to 18 months, please rate your current feeling about the listed areas.
  35. 35. People right now are less pessimistic about the overall economy…than they were a year ago. But when we ask about their personal finances, they have seen no improvement. Scott Rasmussen (of Rasmussen Reports) on Fox Business WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 35
  36. 36. MEDIA ATTENTION PAID TO MEDIA ABOUT POLITICS In Brief: Traditional media reporting channels still get a lot of Americans’ attention for following politics. Local TV reporting got the most attention for political information, with a net positive margin of 30.5 percent (45.8 percent do pay attention, 15.3 percent don’t).The net positive margin was bigger for women than for men (34.4 percent vs. 26.8 percent), and it was similarly bigger for over-40s than for 18-to-39s (33.2 percent vs. 25.2 percent). Local press reporting (paper or online) got less attention paid to it, but the margin was still positive with net 20.9 percent (39.3 percent do, 18.4 percent don’t). In contrast with local TV, the margin of attention was higher among men than among women (22.7 percent vs. 19.3 percent). Across the generation divide, the margin of attention was almost four times as great with over-40s than with 18-to-39s (28.4 percent vs. 7.4 percent). 36 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT Net figures (positive=pay attention, negative=ignore) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Local TV reporting 30.5% 26.8% 34.4% 25.2% 33.2% Local press reporting (paper or online) 20.9% 22.7% 19.3% 7.4% 28.4% Local press columnists (paper or online) 2.3% 6.7% -2.2% -9.6% 8.4% Local TV advertising -7.5% -4.1% -10.9% -3.0% -10.4% Local press advertising (paper or online) -8.0% -2.1% -14.0% -3.7% -10.4% With regard to politics, please indicate how much attention you pay to the following media and information sources in your local area.
  37. 37. Reporting from Detroit—On the city’s east side, where auto workers once assembled cars by the millions, nature is taking back the land. Cottonwood trees grow through the collapsed roofs of homes stripped clean for scrap metal. Wild grasses carpet the rusty shells of empty factories, now home to pheasants and wild turkeys.... “There’s so much land available and it’s begging to be used,” said Michael Score, president of the Hantz Farms, which is buying up abandoned sections of the city’s 139- square-mile landscape and plans to transform them into a large-scale commercial farm enterprise. P.J. Huffstutter The Los Angeles Times WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 37
  38. 38. “You are sitting in the deconstruction of the American Dream,” he says, indicating Baltimore. “Which is to say there was a fundamental myth that if you were willing to work hard, support your family, stay away from shit that ain’t good for you, you’d do all right. You didn’t have to be the smartest guy in the room. The dream wasn’t that everyone could get rich. It was that everyone gets to make a living and see the game on Saturday, and maybe, with the help of a government loan or two, your kid’ll go to college.” His anger is wide-reaching: deprivation in Baltimore, imaginary WMDs in Iraq and Wall Street scandals are all part of the same betrayal—of capitalist institutions “selling people shit and calling it gold.” Interview with David Simon, creator of HBO’s “The Wire,” in The Guardian 38 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
  39. 39. Attention was evenly divided for local press columnists (paper or online); 27.5 percent overall paid no attention to them, but 29.8 percent did, making for a slight positive margin of 2.3 percent. More men than women paid attention (net positive 6.7 percent vs. net negative 2.2 percent), but the biggest gap was across the generation divide; there was a net ignore of 9.6 percent from the 18-to-39s but net attention of 8.4 from the over-40s. Local TV advertising and local press advertising netted out ignored, with negative margins of 7.5 percent and 8.0 percent, respectively. With TV, there was a balance of those who pay attention (24.9 percent) and those who ignore it (32.4 percent). The margin is tighter with men than with women (net 4.1 percent of men ignore, net 10.9 percent of women ignore). The divide between men and women was even bigger with local press advertising; men tended to ignore it, by a narrow net margin of 2.1 percent (30.9 percent pay attention, 33.0 percent ignore), but the margin was a much wider 14.0 percent among women (18.8 percent pay attention, 32.8 percent ignore). OTHER CHANNELS OF POLITICAL INFORMATION In Brief: Beyond the traditional media, far fewer Americans paid attention to other sources of information with regard to politics. Social media in particular scored very low in this American cross-section. A quick glance at the table shows clear net attention negatives for the five sources of information listed. In this context, it offers more information to zoom in on the minorities who do pay attention to them. With community leaders, 20.2 percent overall said they pay attention; it was 21.2 percent among men and a slightly lower 19.3 percent among women. Among the 18-to-39 cohort, it was 18.5 percent, and for the over-40s a slightly bigger 20.8 percent. Although the overall margin was similar for town hall meetings, the breakdown was different. Overall, 20.2 percent pay attention, with 23.7 percent of men but only 16.6 percent of women. In the young cohort, only 12.6 percent pay attention, while 24.0 percent of the over-40s cohort do. Social media such as Facebook and Twitter netted out with a wide negative margin of 37.8 percent. Overall, similar percentages of men and women did pay attention to them (16.5 percent and 16.1 percent); not surprisingly, a higher proportion of 18-to-39s than over-40s pay attention to social media for political information (25.2 percent vs. 11.6 percent). Local bloggers and discussion forums scored even more negatively in terms of commanding attention, with a net negative margin of 54.5 percent. Just 9.2 percent of men and 6.2 percent of women pay attention to them. Even among the 18-to-39s it was only 11.9 percent, vs. 5.6 percent of the over-40s. WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 39 Net figures (positive=pay attention, negative=ignore) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Community leaders (e.g., faith leaders) -19.4% -17.0% -21.8% -14.1% -22.8% Town hall meetings -19.7% -11.4% -28.2% -27.4% -16.0% Fliers and newssheets -25.1% -22.7% -27.6% -22.2% -27.2% Social media (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, other social networks) -37.8% -35.5% -40.2% -4.4% -56.0% Local bloggers and discussion forums -54.5% -46.9% -62.1% -35.6% -64.8% With regard to politics, please indicate how much attention you pay to the following media and information sources in your local area.
  40. 40. The Great Panic of 2008 may have destroyed blind optimism. But if excessive optimism was the near-fatal pose in 2008, blind pessimism has emerged as the reflexive post-bust crouch. And it has led the economic establishment to miss yet another inflection point. While we were wringing our hands about America’s financial and industrial crisis, we ignored a parallel narrative that was emerging: the repairing of balance sheets, an embrace of reality, a nascent recovery. The same folks who chased the recession down now are likely to chase the recovery up. Daniel Gross Slate 40 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT
  41. 41. MEDIA EXPECTATIONS In Brief: The balance of sentiment toward the media outlook was decidedly negative. As in other areas, women netted out more negative than men, and the over-40s were more negative than the 18-to-39s. Only Internet and social media enjoyed net positive expectations, with overall 7.3 percent (26.7 percent positive and 19.4 percent negative). There was a wide difference, however, between men and women; men were net positive by a margin of 17.0 percent, while women were net negative by a margin of 2.6 percent. Expectations of local media were less negative than those of national media. Local TV netted a negative margin of 3.9 percent; unusually, men were more net negative than women (net negative 7.2 percent vs. 0.6 percent). Negative expectations of local press were more pronounced, with an overall negative margin of 8.8 percent. Expectations of national media were far more negative. For national TV, the net negative margin was 21.3 percent (11.9 percent positive vs. 33.2 percent negative). The net negative from men was more pronounced than from women (net 22.6 percent net negative expectations vs. net 19.9 percent). For national press, the negative expectations were even stronger, with an overall negative margin of 27.0 percent. Net figures (positive expectations minus negative expectations) Total Male Female 18-39 Over 40 N= 386 194 192 136 250 Internet and social media 7.3% 17.0% -2.6% 12.6% 4.0% Local TV -3.9% -7.2% -0.6% 0.7% -6.8% Local press -8.8% -4.2% -13.6% -2.2% -12.4% National TV -21.3% -22.6% -19.9% -12.6% -26.0% National press -27.0% -23.7% -30.3% -21.5% -30.4% Average of all rows above -10.7% -8.1% -13.4% -4.6% -14.3% Looking ahead, what are your expectations for the following institutions, offices and functions with regard to the business environment where you live? WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT 41
  42. 42. 42 WHITE PAPER: U.S. MIND AND MOOD REPORT FOOTNOTES 1 http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/11/great-recession-a-brief-etymology/ 2 http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/05/opinion/05brooks.html 3 http://stats.bls.gov/opub/ted/2010/ted_20100217.htm PHOTO CREDITS Cover: creativecommons.org/by laverrue Page 2: creativecommons.org/by Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com Page 3: creativecommons.org/by phxpma Page 4: (from top) creativecommons.org/by SomeDriftwood; creativecommons.org/by Ed Yourdon Page 5: creativecommons.org/by Jason Dunnivant Page 6: (from top) creativecommons.org/by leoncillo sabino; creativecommons.org/by Bolobilly Page 7: (from top) creativecommons.org/by FaceMePLS; creativecommons.org/by erix! Page 8: (from top) creativecommons.org/by Andrew Ciscel; creativecommons.org/by AfghanistanMatters Page 9: creativecommons.org/by Stan Page 10: creativecommons.org/by ajagendorf2 Page 11: creativecommons.org/by got80s Page 12: creativecommons.org/by got80s Page 13: (from top) creativecommons.org/by Strocchi; creativecommons.org/by .ygor; creativecommons.org/by Jonathan Gill Page 14: creativecommons.org/by Jonathan Gill Page 15: creativecommons.org Page 16: creativecommons.org/by See-ming Lee Page 17: creativecommons.org/by Napalm filled tires Page 18: (from left) creativecommons.org/by Sue E; creativecommons.org/by stuff_and_nonsense Page 19: creativecommons.org/by RyAwesome Page 20: creativecommons.org/by Ed Yourdon Page 22: (from top) creativecommons.org/by Jdebner; creativecommons.org/by CarbonNYC Page 23: creativecommons.org/by dsb nola Page 24: creativecommons.org/by quinn.anya Page 25: (from top) creativecommons.org/by Joi; creativecommons.org/by @boetter; creativecommons.org/by believekevin Page 26: creativecommons.org/by mark hillary Page 27: (clockwise from left) creativecommons.org/by quinn anaya; creativecommons.org/by lasr Plougmann; creativecommons.org/by Moriza; creativecommons.org/by markhillary; creativecommons.org/by Ollie Crafoord; creativecommons.org/by kivanja; creativecommons.org/by SimonDoggett Page 28: creativecommons.org/by dani0010 Page 29: creativecommons.org/by borman818 Page 30: creativecommons.org/by Alex E.Proimos Page 32: creativecommons.org/by isafmedia; creativecommons.org/by US Army Africa; creativecommons.org/by svanksalot Page 33: creativecommons.org/by aflcio Page 34: creativecommons.org/by Mr.Thomas Page 35: creativecommons.org/by MajoraCarterGroup Page 36: creativecommons.org/by TheeErin Page 37: creativecommons.org/by Bob Jagendorf Page 38: creativecommons.org/by shadowhound Page 39: creativecommons.org/by Ed Yourdon, by ilamant.com Page 40: creativecommons.org/by dani0010 Page 41: creativecommons.org/by williambrawley
  43. 43. This white paper is the third in a series of thought leadership pursuits by Euro RSCG Worldwide. In October 2009, Euro RSCG Worldwide commissioned a survey to map the trajectory of social life and social media usage in the United States, quizzing 1,228 Americans from all online demographics. A white paper looked at the macro developments in social media; it also brought in numbers and verbatims about people’s hopes for their social life online and offline before finally drawing conclusions and implications for marketers and their clients. Our company conducted an additional survey of 600 Americans about social media and health care. We presented our findings at an FDA hearing on promoting FDA-regulated medical products online and through social media. To get a copy of the white paper, please go to eurorscgsocial.com. Shortly thereafter, seeking to better understand how teen girls spend, socialize and communicate, Euro RSCG Worldwide PR commissioned a survey of 100 teenage girls nationwide age 13 to 18. A white paper that we debuted in March 2010 presented the proprietary study’s findings in the context of today’s communications and business worlds as they are increasingly dominated by social and other digital media. We are using the information we gathered to launch an agency within an agency. By, for and about women and girls (we’re launching with teens), The Sisterhood is an insight group to help define the teenage female consumer’s ideas in fashion and beyond. To get a copy of the white paper, please go to forsistersbysisters.com. And Euro RSCG Worldwide PR and Euro RSCG Life, the health-focused communications network of Euro RSCG Worldwide, commissioned the online “mood monitor” survey of 386 Americans in February 2010 that has led to this white paper. The survey showed that people’s interest in a raft of weighty matters had grown in the previous 12 to 18 months. And on many points, particularly related to money, Americans tended to net out far more pessimistic than optimistic on subjects such as quality of life, employment, real estate and schools. Euro commissioned a similar poll in the bellwether state of Connecticut. Through such studies, we are compiling valuable statistical and anecdotal information about topics—all with social media components—that are not only imperative to our clients and our own growth but are also driving news about the future. The studies are places to listen and learn. They’re driving social momentum for companies, brands and causes. They’re satisfying the new value exchange, where consumers want brands that listen, converse and enable them. Please join us in the conversation. President Euro RSCG Worldwide PR, North America 200 Madison Avenue, 2nd floor New York, NY 10016 http://www.eurorscgpr.com P: 212-367-6811 E: marian.salzman@eurorscg.com Marian Salzman

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