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The spread of the Kremlin’s narratives by a western news agency during the Ukraine crisis

Watanabe, Kohei (2017) The spread of the Kremlin’s narratives by a western news agency during the Ukraine crisis. Journal of International Communication. ISSN 1321-6597

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Identification Number: 10.1080/13216597.2017.1287750


The description of the Ukraine crisis as an ‘information war’ in recently published studies seems to suggest a belief that the Russian government’s propaganda in the crisis contributed to Russia’s swift annexation of Crimea. However, studies focusing on Russia’s state-controlled media fail to explain how Russian’s narrative spread beyond the ‘Slavic world’. This study, based on quantitative and qualitative analyses of news coverage by ITAR-TASS, Reuters, the AP, and AFP over two years, reveals that Russian’s narratives were internationally circulated in news stories published by a western news agency. Although this by no means suggests that the western news agency was complicit in Russia’s propaganda effort, these news stories were published on the most popular online news sites, such as Yahoo News and Huffington Post. These findings highlight the vulnerability of today’s global news-gathering and distribution systems, and the rapid changes in relationships between states and corporations in the media and communications industry.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2017 Journal of International Communication
Divisions: Methodology
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HE Transportation and Communications
J Political Science > JZ International relations
Date Deposited: 08 Feb 2017 14:57
Last Modified: 07 Feb 2024 06:06

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