Armenia Sees Decrease in Direction of Freedom of Speech Index Since 2018

Marianna Danielyan


The US-based International Republican Institute (IRI) recently conducted a public opinion survey. The survey was carried out from December 13 to 22 last year in Yerevan and the regions. One thousand five hundred eight individuals over 18 were surveyed via telephone, using the random digit dialing (RDD) method to select phone numbers.

According to the survey, there has been a positive trend in freedom of speech over the last six months. 54% of respondents noted an improvement, while 19% observed a decline.

Per the regular surveys conducted by the Institute of Public Information and Communication Technology, the highest improvement in freedom of speech was recorded in October 2018, reaching 83%.


Based on the survey data, the index of media independence has improved by 41% over the last six months. However, if we compare this index with the results of previous years, we can see that it has actually decreased. In October 2019, 75% of respondents said that media independence had improved, while in August 2018, 61% of respondents gave the same response.

On the other hand, the indicator of media independence has also increased, reaching 19%. This is the highest level since the survey conducted in March 2023, when it reached 22%.

IRA Armenia

According to a recent survey, 31% of the respondents consider the First Channel the most reliable source of information on political topics. Armenia TV and Shant TV are next in line as the most reliable sources, with 19% and 14%, respectively. Regarding online media, only Azatutun and made it onto the list, with 13% and 3%, respectively. However, 22% of the respondents did not consider any of the media sources to be reliable when it comes to political topics.


In television news programs, the answers are generally similar to those of the previous question. Among the most viewed YouTube channels, 3% of the respondents reported following Armen Chibukhchyan.

According to a recent survey, 72% of respondents consider their friends and family members the most reliable source of security-related information about Armenia. Interestingly, the trust in the media and the prime minister as reliable sources is almost the same. While 63% of respondents consider the media a trustworthy source on security issues, 34% think otherwise. Similarly, 60% of respondents consider the prime minister reliable, while 37% find him unreliable.

Regarding the reliability of information on security issues, Russian media was the least trusted source among participants, with 61% of respondents expressing their distrust.

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