Photo credits: Detektor media
On the eve of parliamentary election, the level of jeansa in the national web-based editions grew up by 22%, comparing to the same period ahead of presidential election. During the period of 24-28 June the experts of IMI revealed 320 materials with signs of paid-for materials.
These are the results of the survey of political jeans carried out by the Institute of Mass Information in the period from June 24 to 28, 2019 in 13 popular online media, with a total sample of more than 17,000 news *.
In general, only 4% of materials with signs of being commissioned by some politician forces were marked as advertising, but this labeling did not comply with the Law “On Advertising” (headings “News”, “Company News”, “Elections”, etc.).
Most of the materials with signs of being paid-for were revealed on the “112 channel” website – 98 materials for 5 days of monitoring, 93% of these materials dealt with one political force, “Opposition Platform – For Life” and its officials.
Within the monitoring period, 48 materials with signs of being paid-for were published by Znay.ua and NewsOne websites.
The NewsOne website promoted the mostly the party “Opposition Platform – For Life”, while Znay.ua actively supported the President Zelensky and his party “Servant of People”, as well as Anatoliy Hrytsenko and “Opposition Platform – For Life”.
During the monitoring period, 37 materials with signs of being paid-for were identified on the RBC-Ukraine website.
There were no recorded politically ordered materials on Ukrainian Pravda, Novoye Vremya and Liga.net websites.
112 channel website
The indisputable leader as to quantity of materials with signs being commissioned journalism became the website of “112 channel”, which during the monitoring period (from June 24 to 28, 2019) published 98 would-be commissioned materials. 93% of these materials were in favour of one political force “Opposition Platform – For Life”.
- Boyko: Release of captives thanks to Medvedchuk is a straightforward, well-tested way
- Boyko: Reaction of the authorities to our talks with Medvedchuk in Russia is the echoes of the past.
- Rabynovich: We are trying to understand what is the economic vector of the country, and we are accused of having talked with wrong persons
These materials are accompanied with some positive pictures of the subjects of the election process:
Also on the website we revealed some materials favouring Oleg Lyashko and Vitaliy Klychko:
- Klitschko: I demand from the developer to stop construction in Protasov Yar until they settle the conflict with Kiev residents
- Klitschko: Soon, residents of Troyeshchyna can take rest with comfort on renewed beach
- Lyashko: Salaries first have to be raised to working people
During the same period before the presidential elections (April 1 to April 12, 2019), this site had 69 materials which would be commissioned ones. That is, we can talk about the significant growth of paid-for materials on the website of “112 channel”.
During the monitoring period, 48 materials with features being commissioned ones were revealed on this website. As well as the website of “112”, the largest news site Newsone supported the “Opposition Platform – For Life”.
- “Opposition platform – For life” supports the continuation of the dialogue in the framework of the PACE
- Kyva about the situation in PACE: No one needs a lame partner in the international arena
- Medvedchuk: Zelensky has no answers to the questions that Ukrainians are worried about
However, the website also had materials in favor of Yulia Tymoshenko:
- Tymoshenko about coalition in new parliament: It’s not time to start cock fighting
- Tymoshenko on judicial reform: Yanukovych’s judges replaced with Poroshenko’s judges
In addition to these political forces and persons on this website, we recorded some materials that were in favour of Oleg Lyashko and Vitaliy Klychko.
- Klitschko: Kyiv city hall is willing to help the frustrated contributing participants of Wojciechowski’s development project
- Lyashko has accused Zelensky of high treasure because of Russia’s return to PACE
For the same period of time on the eve of the presidential election, the level of commissioned materials was up to 64. Accordingly, the level of such materials on the site decreased.
Like on Newsone website, on Znay.ua during the monitoring period our experts revealed 48 materials with features of paid-for.
The website, as it had been observed previously, continues to demonstrate its loyalty to the head of state Volodymyr Zelensky and to come out with stories with signs of black PR targeting Petro Poroshenko.
The materials about the incumbent president contain emotional evaluative judgments with positive connotation. The website stubbornly continues to call Zelensky “Servant of the people”.
- Zelensky came to grips with the “superior hierarchy” of the SBU: whom the servant of the people dismissed
- Zelensky received the first salary as president of Ukraine: not so high
- The president goes on the reforms axe – the electricity market is being introduced from July 1 – Petro Oleschuk
Also on the site we revealed some materials in favor of “Opposition Platform – For Life”, which criticize the incumbent president
- Rabynovych: Zelensky should thank him for returning Ukrainians instead of criticism of Medvedchuk
- The authorities are trying to prevent the candidate from “OPPOSITION PLATFORM FOR LIFE” to participate in the elections
Thus, it’s impossible to see a clear editorial policy of the website; on one hand, they support the head of state; on the other hand, they place paid-for materials in favour of other political forces that criticize him.
On the site experts also found materials in favor of Anatoly Gritsenko, which also contained emotions and evaluative judgments.
- On Russian TV, they attacked Grytsenko: the election video forced Putin’s propagandists to sprinkle with poison
- Gritsenko sent a powerful signal to Zelensky on the Constitution Day: every regime does it
- Defeating Putin without arms and returning Donbass: Grytsenko mentioned two scenarios for Zelensky
During previous monitorings of the website the number of materials with signs of being paid-for was up to 64.
During the monitoring period, 37 would-be paid-for materials were revealed on the site.
The most actively the site was supporting Yulia Tymoshenko and her party “Batkivshchyna”:
- Tymoshenko told where to take money to raise social standards
- Tymoshenko signed a memorandum of association of transport operators
- Tymoshenko called for the unification of political forces who support changes
In addition to Tymoshenko, the website also supported Oleg Lyashko:
- Lyashko demands a fair minimum price for milk
- Lyashko showed the Europeans that Ukrainians would not surrender – Logvinsky
Compared to the same period ahead of the presidential elections, the level of jeansa stories has remained virtually unchanged (38 would-be paid-for materials).
During the monitoring period, on the website “Obozrevatel”, 35 materials with signs of being ordered were revealed.
The site supports various political forces and does not prevail any particular party or policy.
For example, the site had some materials in favor of Yulia Tymoshenko, who continues to promote herself with populist slogans, with no newsbreaks:
Besides Tymoshenko, the website also published materials in favour of Petro Poroshenko with his party and the “Opposition bloc”:
- The economic part of the association agreement with the EU kills Ukrainian agriculture – Kolesnikov
- In Rada it is necessary to provide protection of interests of regions – Buryak
- “It will not be possible to get us into a siege”: Poroshenko rigorously replied to Moscow as to gas issue
- “No revenge!” In “EU” have promised to restore the broken monument Nigoyan
15 materials with signs of jeansa were found out on the website during the monitoring period, of which 7 materials were marked with the heading “Elections”. However, not all materials with this mark had the signs of being paid-for. In the ad headings this mark was not specified.
For example, these were materials in favor of the presidential party “Servant of the people”:
- Party “Servant of the people” presented candidates for election in all single-mandat districts of Kyiv – news election 2019 |UNIAN
- Oleksander Tkachenko told how he coordinated the work of Kyiv single-mandate candidates from the “Servant of the people” – news election 2019 |UNIAN
Experts found 13 materials with signs of paid-for ones on the 24-channel site. The site is actively and positively highlighting the activities of its owners, Andrei Sadovy and his political force “Samopomich”.
- “Samopomich” supported the demands of anti-corruption activists
- At the top, you need the principled hard people, – Sadovyy met the anti-corruptionists
However, the website is supporting not only the interests of its owners, because it had several materials in favour of Yulia Tymoshenko.
- We will stop the theft of the strategic property of the state, – Tymoshenko to the Accounting Chamber
- “Batkivshchyna” at the TOP-20 of effective and active parties of Ukraine
During the 5 days of monitoring, we revealed 12 materials with signs of being paid-for, 2 of them were marked as and advertising heading “news”, and respectively, were classified as inappropriate labelled. We will note that according to the Law “On Advertising”, the commissioned materials have to be marked with the words “Advertising” or “For publicity purposes”, and according to the Law “On Elections”, the commissioned political materials have to be marked with the words “Political campaign”. Therefore, media that come up with different advertising labels, such as “Actual” or “Elections,” violate these rules of law, and also mislead their audience, who may not identify these sections as advertising.
The site contains materials in favor of Igor Smesko and “Opposition Platform – For Life”.
We revealed 11 materials with signs of being paid-for in “Sehodnya” website, which is three times less than during the same period of the presidential election campaign.
The website covered positively mostly the political force “Opposition bloc”:
- Zaporizhzhya Mayor wants the future Parliament to protect the interests of the regions
- Borys Kolesnikov: The authorities are obliged to lobby Ukrainian enterprises of the Donbas
We should note that the owner of the website and the media holding of the same name is the oligarch Rinat Akhmetov, who is associated with the opposition party “Opposition Bloc”. Respectively, such materials, according to IMI experts, may be placed within the editorial policy of the media owner.
We revealed 3 materials with signs of being paid-for on the website, and 2 among them were marked inappropriately. Advertising materials were labeled “News”, for example, ” POWER AND HONOR” is preparing a program for the development of Holoseevo historical spots. ”
The material ” PARTY” SERVANT OF THE PEOPLE “PRESENTED CANDIDATES TO Parliament election FOR KYIV” is evaluated as improperly marked paid-for story because it is favouring the political force “Servant of the people”.
* Monitoring was conducted from 24 to 28 June 2019 in the following media: “Obozrevatel”, “Znay.ua”, 24th channel, “Gordon”, “Ukrainska Pravda”, “Novoe vremya”, UNIAN, “Sehodnya”, TSN , 112.ua, Newsone, RBC.ua, “Liga.net”. The sample covers all news in a row thathad been published on the sites during the specified period (more than 30 thousand news).
This study was made possible thanks to the support of the American people, which was provided through the USAID “Media Program in Ukraine” project implemented by the international organization Internews Network. The content of the materials is solely the responsibility of the NGO “Institute of Mass Information” and does not necessarily reflect the views of USAID, the US government and the Internews Network.
Olena Golub, media expert IMI