Press-releases

Channels of information

This survey took place between August 23–30, 2018 and was conducted throughout all of Russia in both urban and rural settings. The survey was carried out among 1600 people over the age of 18 in 136 localities of 52 of the country’s regions. The survey was conducted as a personal interview in respondents’ homes. The answer distribution is presented as percentages of the number of participants along with data from previous surveys.

The statistical error of these studies for a selection of 1600 people (with a probability of 0.95) does not exceed:

3.4% for indicators around 50%
2.9% for indicators around 25%/75%
2.0% for indicators around 10%/90%
1.5% for indicators around 5%/95%

  • Social media and the Internet continue to strengthen their positions as channels of information to which people turn to receive news.
  • Television remains the main source of information for Russians, with the exception of the youngest respondents (aged 18 to 24), who receive news from television and the Internet with virtually the same frequency (54% versus 49% in August 2018). Among older age groups, there is a stronger distinction between those who receive news from TV versus the Internet.
  • The more educated and urbanized a respondent, the more frequently he or she turns to the Internet and social media to receive news. While one in every two respondents with a higher education and one in two Moscow residents receive their news online, only one in four respondents with a secondary education and one in four respondents living in a rural area use online information channels to receive news.
  • Trust in TV news is higher than trust in online news even among Internet and social media users (42% versus 32% and 40% versus 34% respectively). “Non-users” have no trust whatsoever in Internet news, while among “users,” the Internet and social media are among the top three most trusted news sources.
  • Internet and social media users most frequently cited “protests,” “economic affairs,” and “pension reform” among those issues which are more fully and objectively covered online than on the main television channels.

WHERE DO YOU MOST OFTEN RECEIVE NATIONAL AND WORLD NEWS? (respondents were presented with a card from which they could choose more than one answer; ranked in descending order according to August 2018)

Aug. 09 Jun. 13 Mar. 14 Nov. 15 Jul. 16 Mar. 18 Aug. 18
Television 94 88 90 85 86 85 73
Online publications (newspapers, magazines, information portals) 9 21 24 21 33 27 37
Friends, relatives, neighbors 26 24 25 24 27 27 18
Online social media* 6 14 15 13 23 21 28
Radio 41 16 18 13 22 15 15
Newspapers 37 20 19 13 19 13 13
Magazines 8 4 5 2 4 2 3
Other <1 1 1 1 1 <1 <1
I’m not interested in the news <1 1 <1 1 1 3 2
It is difficult to say <1 1 <1 1 2 <1 <1

WHICH SOURCES OF INFORMATION DO YOU TRUST MOST FOR NATIONAL AND WORLD NEWS? (respondents were presented with a card from which they could choose more than one answer; ranked in descending order according to August 2018)

Aug. 09 Jun. 13 Mar. 14 Nov. 15 Jul. 16 Mar. 18 Aug. 18
Television 79 51 50 41 59 51 49
Online publications (newspapers, magazines, information portals) 7 14 20 18 20 19 24
Friends, relatives, neighbors 9 16 19 19 12 19 13
Online social media* 4 11 9 9 12 15 15
Newspapers 16 12 14 12 9 8 7
Radio 23 12 13 11 9 9 10
Magazines 1 2 1 2 1 1 1
Other <1 1 1 1 1 <1 1
I don’t trust any of them 6 8 4 8 8 10 15
It is difficult to say 3 6 6 6 6 8 4

* In August 2009 – “Other online sources.”

SOME PEOPLE BELIEVE THAT CERTAIN TOPICS ARE COVERED MORE FULLY AND OBJECTIVELY ONLINE THAN ON MAINSTREAM TELEVISION CHANNELS. DO YOU AGREE WITH THIS, AND IF SO, WHICH TOPICS ARE COVERED MORE FULLY AND OBJECTIVELY ONLINE THAN ON TELEVISION? (respondents were presented with a card from which they could choose more than one answer; ranked in descending order according to August 2018)

Mar. 17 Aug. 18
Personal life and welfare of public sector employees, deputies, and public figures 20 24
Pension reform ** 24
The economic situation 13 22
Protests 9 21
Foreign policy situation 9 18
Russia’s participation in military operations abroad 7 14
Criticism of Russian foreign policy by Western countries and the domestic opposition 10 14
Inflation rate 8 14
Appearances by opposition politicians 10 14
Government plans for instituting unpopular reforms 7 11
Intelligence agency work to maintain order 5 9
Military expenditures 4 8
National natural resource reserves 4 7
Other 1 5
There are no topics which are covered more fully and objectively online than on the mainstream television channels 26 18
It is difficult to say 34 26

 ** This option was not included in the list of possible answers in March 2017.

Translated by Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (formerly Monterey Institute of International Studies).

The ANO Levada Center has been forcibly included in the registry of non-commercial organizations acting as foreign agents. Read the Director of the Levada Center’s statement of disagreement with this decision here.

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