More and more Russians are relying on Internet social networks for information, though most still get their news from television programs, where the state dominates. According to a poll conducted last month by the Levada Center independent polling agency (designated as a “foreign agent” by the Russian Justice Ministry), 42 percent of Russians named social networks as a source of information, while 64 percent said they follow the news on TV. Thirty-nine percent of Russians said they also read online publications.
The Levada Center’s new poll documented the extraordinary rise of TikTok in Russia, which now eclipses Facebook, 14 percent to nine percent. Vkontakte remains Russia’s most popular social network (43 percent of respondents said they use it), followed by YouTube (35 percent) and Instagram and Odnoklassniki (each 31 percent). Just three percent of Russians said they use Twitter.
TikTok’s popularity has grown seven times since March 2019, when just two percent of Russians said they use the platform.