The Independent Journalism Center (IJC) launched in December 2015 a study titled “Measuring the perceptions of sociopolitical news by the media audience in the Republic of Moldova.”
In the study, experts Tamara Caraus (Moldova) and Ivan Godarsky (Slovakia) analyzed the media sources preferred by Moldovan citizens, the perception of information and manipulation, as well as the preferences in terms of domestic media versus foreign media.
According to the study, television is the most important source of socio-political news for 67% of respondents, and it is the most reliable source for 68% of media consumers. The second place has been taken by online media with 26%, followed by radio with 5%. At the same time, 22% of respondents trust online media, while radio enjoys less trust – of only 4%.
62% of respondents said they were familiarized with the term of manipulation and perceive it as something bad. They found the difference between manipulation and propaganda in their degree and intensity, the latter being perceived as a more intense attempt to influence the public. At the same time, only 4% of respondents believed they are manipulated by mass media, although 70% said that the media manipulate. People say that propaganda and manipulation are mostly used by Moldovan media (77%), followed by the media from Russia (60%), Romania (50%) and Ukraine (48%).
According to experts, the survey reveals a contradictory message: Russian media are the most trusted but at the same time they are considered to have professional problems and take the second place in terms of manipulation.
Also, media consumers found differences in the propaganda instruments used by the Russian and American media. Respondents believe that American media use propaganda as often as Russian, but less aggressively.
The study showed that Russian language speakers first of all take into consideration the language in which information is presented, while for Romanian language speakers the language criterion is not decisive. Also, the term of foreign mass media has different meanings. For some, it is the media from other countries, for others – the media that is geographically more distant and covers the situation in Moldova subjectively, while the third category considers “foreign” only the media that is neither Romanian, nor Russian.
The study has been produced on the basis of two researches (national survey and focus groups) conducted by the Institute for Marketing and Polls IMAS-INC Chisinau on commission from the IJC.
This study has been produced with the financial support from the U.S. Embassy in Moldova.
Source: Media Azi