Ukraine profile - Media

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Information warfare with Russia has had a profound impact on the media landscape.

Television dominates the media scene, and private commercial channels are the leading outlets.

Major media groups are influential in the market. A cluster of national networks, including Inter TV and 1+1, have the biggest audiences. Funding for the public service network UA:First is meagre and its ratings are low.

Some newspapers publish Ukrainian and Russian-language editions. The press is diverse in terms of political stance.

National media have adopted a united patriotic agenda following Russia's annexation of Crimea and the armed conflict in the east. Ukraine has banned cable relays of leading Russian TVs; in turn, areas under Russian or separatist control have seen pro-Kiev outlets silenced.

The introduction of Ukrainian-language quotas for TV and radio has been seen as a way to counter Russian soft power and promote patriotism.

Violence against journalists and curbs caused by the conflict in the east have raised concerns about media freedom. Reporters Without Borders says separatist-controlled areas are "no-go areas without critical journalists".

Just under 41 million Ukrainians (93% of the population) have internet access (Hootsuite/We Are Social, January 2019). Some other estimates are much lower.

The conflict in the east and the information war with Russia are big challenges to internet freedom, Freedom House NGO has said. Several Russian social media have been blocked, as have pro-Russian and pro-separatist websites.

Virtual private networks are widely used to access Russian sites, and Russian social networks including VKontakte are still popular.

Facebook is the leading social network. OLX, the Ukrainian mirror of Russia's Yandex search engine, is one of the top five most-visited websites.

The press