Online Media Coverage of the Artsakh Conflict

From 1 to 31 May, 2019, online media coverage of the Artsakh conflict was in the spotlight of “Media Advocate” initiative. 35 leading news agencies have been monitored. The articles were selected through international analytical programs.

3 categories were selected: News / Analysis / Opinion

In addition, the materials have also been segmented as negative / positive / neutral

The articles that do not reflect the policies and ideas of the authorities are negative, the ones that represent the views of authorities are positive, and finally those articles which express comprehensive opinions or which are official releases are neutral.

During the specified period, 5175 articles were monitored.

The graph (See gr. 1) illustrates the image obtained by combining the results of selected categories and segments. The chart represents the X and Y coordinate axis, where the horizontal coordinate is the segment (positive / negative / neutral), and the vertical one is the category (news / analysis / opinion). During the calculations positive and analytic identifiers were marked with (+), negative and comment (-) signs, neutral and news with (0) number.

The viewpoints on the Artsakh issue are different. The graph tells itself which news outlets have an oppositional stance and which support the government’s policy. Nikol Pashinyan’s statements on the Artsakh issue are mostly criticized by experts.

According to media reports, there are contradictions between the authorities of Artsakh and Armenia which are expressed both at the state and international levels. For example, Artsakh authorities were not invited to official events of the First Republic Day celebrations.

The press close to the government constantly reminds of the theses preparing for peace, which the oppositionists consider dangerous and point out the joint Turkish-Azerbaijani military exercises.

“Media Advocate” initiative calls on the media outlets to be attentive to the most sensitive Artsakh issue, and not to be manipulated. To be guided by state interest when doing analyses, neither support the pro-governmental not the oppositional views but to approach the issue objectively.

P.S. The “Media Advocate” initiative will continue to focus on the events; in particular, any encroachment and biased approach to freedom of expression will be harshly assessed.