What media tell vs what the audience remembers

January 2022
Media reported on invasion of Ukraine, and people remembered military registration for women

In December, Ukrainians were told the most about the possible Russian invasion (169 million media contacts, including television and the Internet), and Omicron (178 million contacts). Still they remembered military registration for women (56% of respondents) and “a thousand” for vaccination (47%).

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This is the result of the December research "What the media tell vs what the audience remembers" by Gradus with the support of the Corestone think tank.

The research compares monthly media coverage of topics and their resonance among Ukrainians. "The most memorable thing is about the person. That was the secret of the easy mention of the "crazy thousand", which we have been watching for the second month," Yevhenia Blyzniuk, a founder and director of Gradus, explains. "Although the media coverage of this information in December was 25 times less than the one about the Omicron strain".

New, simple, and emotional things are also easy to remember - and the news about women's military registration reflected this. "I am sure that Ukrainian women have talked about this among each other, with their husbands, and in social networks," says the sociologist. Therefore, despite the fact that the media provided only 11 million contacts with the news, 56% (the largest number of respondents) mentioned it in the poll. Even such a sensitive topic as the possible Russian invasion of Ukraine with its impressive 169 million opportunity to see was mentioned by only 41% of respondents. Probably, because the topic has been on the media radar for the second month.

Ukrainians stubbornly do not remember the topic of Nord Stream-2. In the last three months, it has accumulated one and a half billion media contacts but has never risen above 9th place. In December, only 13% of respondents named it.

In total, 11 of the 16 topics mentioned are related to the politics. Covid topics become leaders among the five non-political ones, and the other three - the increase in fares in Kyiv, Vasyl Lomachenko's boxing match, and the scandal surrounding the image of a Ukrainian woman in the series "Emily in Paris" - were at the bottom of the rankings. Even such a completely media event as Andriy Bohdan's interview with Dmytro Gordon took a higher place in the minds of Ukrainians.

The Gradus study involved 1,000 adult citizens of Ukraine who filled out a questionnaire in the Gradus mobile application. The Gradus online panel displays the population structure of cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants aged 18-60 by sex, age, size, and region. Field period: December 30, 2021. Sample size: 1000 respondents. Top media coverage topics were selected by the Corestone Group, which specializes in media analysis, including media coverage.

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