Four years ago, technology companies were widely seen as having a positive impact on the United States. But the share of Americans who hold this view has tumbled 21 percentage points since then, from 71% to 50%.
Negative views of technology companies' impact on the country have nearly doubled during this period, from 17% to 33%, according to a new Pew Research Center survey. Nearly one-in-five (18%) now volunteer their impact has been neither positive nor negative or that it is mixed, or they offer no opinion.
The survey, which asks about the impact of seven major institutions and groups – including banks, universities, the news media and religious organizations – finds that no more than about half of U.S. adults say any of them are having a positive effect on the country.
There are substantial partisan differences in these views, but the gap between Democrats and Republicans is relatively modest when it comes to technology companies: Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents are 10 percentage points more likely than Republicans and GOP leaners to say these firms have a positive effect on the way things are going in the country (54% vs. 44%). Since 2015, there have been similar declines in positive views among members of both parties.
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