More than half the population trusts TV producers less than it did a year ago, a poll commissioned by the Edinburgh TV Festival suggests.
The poll suggests some people have become cynical about TV
Recent phone-in scandals and faked TV competitions have knocked public confidence, with 79% saying they would not enter a TV phone contest again.
Nearly half of the 2,216 people surveyed - 48% - said they did not trust television very much at all.
The YouGov poll was conducted online in early August.
Nearly three-quarters of respondents - 72% - believe TV phone-in competitions are difficult to trust because there is no way of telling whether or not people have a fair chance of winning.
The survey said 59% believe documentaries generally told the truth "but with some distortions at the editing stage".
But reality TV fared worse - 60% of those surveyed said the shows were "generally misleading as a result of severe and dishonest editing".
The survey comes ahead of a media debate at this year's Edinburgh TV Festival, called Trust Me... I'm In Telly, to be held on Friday.
The panel will be chaired by broadcaster Nicky Campbell, who will be joined by Channel 4 chief executive Andy Duncan, BBC Vision director Jana Bennett, media journalist Ray Snoddy, ITV director of TV Simon Shaps and the chief creative officer of Endemol UK, Tim Hincks.