During the period we monitored following Lithuanian mainstream news websites 15min.lt, Delfi.lt, Lrytas.lt, Delfi.ru, Alfa.lt, and the fringe news website ekspertai.eu. News websites published articles in total 13 464 articles which generated 51505 comments.

Number of articles, comments, other June – July 2020

Media number_of_articles number_of_comments number_of_ips
Delfi 3378 12195 1[1]
15min 4175 3965 2030
Lrytas 2999 33316 1
RU.Delfi 1369 391 1
Alfa 1200 0 0
Ekspertai 340 1638 491
13461 51505

To compare with the previous period.

April – May 2020

Media number_of_articles number_of_comments number_of_ips
Delfi.lt 3552 0 (cannot crawl comments) 0 (cannot crawl comments)
15min 4280 8681 3834
lrytas 2849 65045 1
Ru.Delfi 1516 0 (cannot crawl comments) 0 (cannot crawl comments)
Alfa 1140 0 0
ekspertai 477 7884 1748
Total 13 814 81 610 5583

 

Number of Articles and Comments during June – July.

Compare o the previous period

June was more active in generating comments to articles than July; most likely because July – August is  the time of holiday.

June 2020

Media number_of_articles number_of_comments number_of_ips
Delfi 1712 11633 1
15min 2123 3504 1837
Lrytas 1509 30396 1
Ru.Delfi 703 383 1
Alfa 609 0 0
Ekspertai 124 1638 491
6 780 47 554

 

July 2020

Media number_of_articles number_of_comments number_of_ips
Delfi 1664 562 1
15min 2051 461 321
Lrytas 1490 2920 1
Ru.Delfi 665 8 1
Alfa 591 0 0
Ekspertai 216 0 0
6 677 3 951

Delfi.lt is the largest news website in Lithuania by the number of unique users and the time spent on the website, and generating comments. See section Miscellaneous.

The quantitative trend of articles, comments and IPs remains unchanged: although Lrytas.lt has far less unique users than Delfi.lt  and 15min, it generates the largest amount of comments. This fact could be explained by the specific style and tone of the news and the type of  Lrytas audience (it likes to comment).

As usually, 15min.lt published the largest number of articles. The Lithuanian reader who looks for the quality information, appreciates 15min.lt website more than the media market leader Delfi. The pattern remains the same – 15min keeps a better balance of the content of quality information with the pulp fiction, and it uses less click-bite tricks.  The investigative journalism section also creates value added to the media outlet quality and reputation.

During the monitoring period Delfi number of comments exceeded 15min four times and Lrytas  generated 8 times more comments.  15min website requests commentators to register. This policy ensures the quality of comments and impedes readers from spamming.

According to the data available, Delfi takes the second place by number of comments generated during the period (after Lrytas), and according to the number of articles, it is in the second place (after 15min).

During the period of monitoring all comments are texts (written), no visuals, emoji or audio-videos.

Topics and themes of comments

Although the topic of  Covid19 and the lockdown has never left the front pages of media, articles related to the pending Parliamentary elections in October, on politicians and political parties’ ratings generated the most of comments.

Topics that received the greatest attention among commentators are following:

1. ”Open Beach” project by Vilnius Municipality. The open sand beach was created in the Lukiskes square (the central square of the city) immediately after the end of the lockdown. The Lithuanian capital has made international headlines this year (after the Covid19 lockdown) with initiatives like open-air cafe, drive-in cinema on airport tarmac, and Vacation in Vilnius weekends. However, this time, the Open Beach provoked a major public debate, dividing the public at large and politicians into those against open beach in this place and others who enjoyed the initiative. The argument circled about the very place where the beach was opened; the initiative itself was well received. The Lukiskes square is heavily load with historicl memories: next to it there’s the former KGB building (now the Genocide museum) where Lithuanian freedom fighters were imprisoned, tortured, killed during the Soviet occupation; during the Tsarist Russia’s occupation Lithuanian insurgents were executed there.

Additional to the debate and even the argument how the Lukiskiu square should be honored,  commentators debated about the start of the Parliamentary election campaign. They noted that the liberal party, to which the Mayor of Vilnius belongs to, started a smart communication campaign with this project: increased party’s visibility, identified its electorate and mobilized party’s supporters.

2. Few more topics that were broadly commented: ratings of politicians, published just after the end of the lockdown, and ratings of political parties published a bit later. Ratings showed that the leader of the Homeland Union (Conservative party) Gabrielius Landsbergis is among the least popular politicians. Comments focused on his kinship – he is the grandson of Vytautas Landsbergis, the long standing leader of the Conservative Party and the former head of state. Messages were anti-Vytautas Landsbergis, anti-Conservative party and anti-political establishment.  Landsbergis’ role was described as a destroying force in the Lithuanian politics.

Published ratings of political parties provoked further criticism of parties and politicians. Also, comments reflected absence of trust of the Seimas (Parliament), political parties as well as the Government institutions. The exchange of views/opinions circulated about the majority holding party Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union, that they are corrupt and used the Covid19 to promote themselves, that the Conservative party (opposition) is also corrupt and owned by the Landsbergis family; neither the Social Democrats act in the interest of ordinary people, etc.

3. The first annual address/report by Gitanas Nausėda, President of the Republic of Lithuania, has received attention among commentators too. However, comments were not so much about the report/address but rather criticism of the state. The main question raised and discussed was whether the political system and power of establishment would be reduced, or the situation in Lithuania will remain the same, unchanged (because of the power of establishment) with the new President in the office. The first year of his Presidency has not made any changes, according to comments.

4. Another topic that received lot of attention and only, namely, 151 “dislike” was about the LGBT representatives rally outside the Presidential office to remind President Nauseda his promise to wear a badge demonstrating the solidarity with LGBT.  The reaction of commentators shows that the LGBT topic is still a highly sensitive topic and receives negative reaction.

5. The military parade in Moscow to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Russian Army’s victory against the Nazis Germany. The article/topic received 90 “dislikes” and not a single “like”. Comments raised discussion about Lithuanians collaborating with Nazis; whether Russia is really a liberator of Lithuania and  Europe and what is the role of Allies in WWII, whether they are also winners of WWII. Such comments circulate as soon as the WWII topic is raised. The tone of comments was polite. The reaction to the topic in the article shows the importance of collective memories and the need of the dialogue about these historical memories.

Few insights on the importance of historical memories.

It is important because historical narratives are foundational for most collective identities. The way any group relates to its history has implications for its political and social policies, and the behavior of a nation. Russia (the Kremlin) interjects itself into the battle of memories insisting that the only winner and victor of WWII is Russia, the Red Army is a liberator of Europe and the Victor.  The Kremlin autocratically rejects any other collective memory of the WWII.  Historical memory is a complex question, interpretation of which cannot be white or black.  In the democratic society, narratives are constructed around a set of multiple dialogues between several perspectives that develops a collaborative perspective between different countries and nations. The end of WWII is celebrated in Europe as the time of reconciliation and unity that despite war horrors European nations managed to forgive and become united for the sake of collective prosperity.

Carefully cultivated historical narratives often suggest an appropriate behavior that qualifies a person as a member of the respective group, be it a nation, a region or an ethnicity. The historical narrative of Russia as a liberator of Europe from Nazis as described/told by the Kremlin administration turns into ideology mobilizing the Russian society with a feeling of victory and justifies a common Russian saying that “victors are not judged, as they set the rules”.

One important target of those historical narratives are young people (new generation who does not remember WWII) at an age when their historical interest takes shape and when it is easier to influence their historical outlook. The Kremlin authorities view the regulation of historical memory as a vital task.

Top 30 most commented articles in June – July – August 20

Note. Titles of articles are quoted in Lithuanian

Article Title Media outlet Number of comments Date
Ekspertai įvertino naujai pasirodžiusius reitingus: Gabrieliui Landsbergiui reikia susitaikyti ir padaryti išvadas delfi 696 2020-07-18T12:28:32.000+03:00
Partijų reitingų pokyčiai: LVŽS aplenkė konservatorius delfi 577 2020-07-10T13:12:25.000+03:00
COVID-19 Lietuvoje privertė pripažinti bjaurią tiesą: net 50 proc. moterų laiko norma tenkinti vyrų seksualinius poreikius delfi 552 2020-07-07T13:54:53.000+03:00
Feisbuke gėjus iškoneveikęs vyras: nuoširdžiai atsiprašau visų, ką įžeidžiau delfi 527 2020-06-27T13:03:01.000+03:00
Loreta Graužinienė paskelbė grįžtanti į politiką delfi 526 2020-07-10T14:15:50.000+03:00
Maskvoje įvyko karinis paradas pergalės prieš nacistinę Vokietiją 75-ųjų metinių proga lrytas 494 2020-06-24T10:46:00.000+03:00
Įvertinęs pirmuosius metus G. Nausėda atsiribojo nuo D. Grybauskaitės: „Turiu teisę žiūrėti Lietuvos žmonėms į akis“ lrytas 482 2020-07-09T11:05:00.000+03:00
Paplūdimys Lukiškėse Seimo temperatūrą pakėlė iki maksimumo: kaltinimai skrieja į abi puses delfi 478 2020-06-25T13:50:44.000+03:00
Valstybės dieną dėmesio centre atsidūręs choras „Ąžuoliukas“ paskelbė savo poziciją lrytas 463 2020-07-08T11:58:00.000+03:00
Naujos deklaracijos: turtingiausi Seimo nariai – Karbauskis, Bradauskas ir Landsbergis pildoma delfi 460 2020-07-15T14:25:48.000+03:00
Sužinojęs, kiek kainuos draudimas, BMW įsigijęs vaikinas neteko amo: „Kosmosas“ lrytas 379 2020-06-26T09:13:00.000+03:00
Paslaugos paprašiusią anytą įskaudino marčios atsakymas: „Kaip skuduru per veidą“ lrytas 378 2020-07-21T11:27:18.000+03:00
Sprendimą dėl Lukiškių aikštės priėmęs Seimas privirė košės: Seime – kreipimasis į Nausėdą delfi 366 2020-06-30T13:51:12.000+03:00
Po G. Nausėdos langais – LGBT piketas: reikalauja prisiminti duotą pažadą lrytas 366 2020-07-03T11:44:00.000+03:00
Lenkijoje sulaikytas „Porsche“ vairuotojas iš Lietuvos papasakojo, kas iš tiesų nutiko kelyje prie Augustavo lrytas 361 2020-07-10T11:37:00.000+03:00
Išteisinta buvusi teisėja V. Savickienė prabilo apie seklių ir prezidentės kirčius: „Buvo labai baisu“ lrytas 340 2020-07-18T06:20:50.000+03:00
Skyrybų dramą išgyvenanti R. Ščiogolevaitė atvėrė širdį: „Neturėjome, ką valgyti, bet mums padėjo“ lrytas 337 2020-07-21T10:16:00.000+03:00
Skvernelis į grasinimus sureagavo rimtai: bus keičiama atvykimo iš užsienio tvarka prabilo apie kriterijus, kada gali būti grąžintos kaukės delfi 328 2020-07-16T13:17:52.000+03:00
Nausėdos tonas griežtėja – po rinkimų žada kitus kriterijus skiriant ministrus papildyta 11:56 val. delfi 324 2020-07-09T13:45:58.000+03:00
Šokiruojanti statistika: privačios gydymo įstaigos apsukas didino 120 proc., o valstybinės tepasiekė 20 proc. delfi 312 2020-07-17T13:18:42.000+03:00
Man – 26-eri, vyrui – 54-eri. Niekas netiki, kad ištekėjau iš meilės lrytas 312 2020-07-18T08:02:48.000+03:00
Iš A. Verygos – nerimą keliančios prognozės: antroji viruso banga gali prasidėti jau po kelių savaičių lrytas 310 2020-07-13T10:51:00.000+03:00
Staigus šuolis: patvirtinti 26 nauji užsikrėtimo koronavirusu atvejai grįžimas iš Kroatijos baigėsi protrūkiu delfi 298 2020-07-24T13:32:37.000+03:00
Užsikrėtimų skaičius vėl auga: per vakar dieną Lietuvoje patvirtinta 17 naujų COVID-19 atvejų delfi 291 2020-07-19T13:35:00.000+03:00
Dėl sugadintų atostogų – kauniečio kaltinimai populiariam Šventosios restoranui: „Ar tai normalu?“ lrytas 289 2020-07-14T11:51:00.000+03:00
Vilnius nusidažė JAV spalvomis: įspūdingu paradu mini Nepriklausomybės dieną lrytas 276 2020-07-04T10:09:00.000+03:00
LGBT bendruomenė žada drąsinti prezidentą įsisegti vaivorykštinį ženkliuką delfi 266 2020-07-02T12:48:41.000+03:00
Į viešumą pateko konservatoriams skirta apžvalga: I. Šimonytės ir G. Landsbergio vaidmuo, įvertino valstiečius lrytas 262 2020-06-28T11:26:00.000+03:00
Konservatoriams tvirtinant rinkimų sąrašą – aštri G. Landsbergio kritika ir valstiečiams, ir G. Nausėdai lrytas 257 2020-07-11T11:20:00.000+03:00

 

Monitoring of the most reacted (positive/negative) comments

Most reacted comments – “likes” and “dislikes” were related to the pulp fiction topics: marriages and age differences; divorces, relationship with mother in law, etc. failing marriage of influencers. Also, as it was mentioned earlier, topics of the Victory of WWII, and LGBT.

IP addresses per multiple sites

Monitoring shows that website Ekspertai.eu (fringe website) commentators prefer to comment more than once, sometimes to debate the issue or opinion.

Article Title Media outlet Number of comments IP Count
Riaušes Jungtinėse Valstijose organizuoja Rusija ekspertai 102 69
Eitynės prieš rasizmą: įvyko kivirčas su renginio priešininkais, nukentėjusysis nuvežtas į ligoninę 15min 70 63
Daugėjant koronaviruso atvejų Aurelijus Veryga išėjo atostogų, o į jo vietą stojo Jaroslavas Narkevičius 15min 59 57
Po V. Putino straipsnio L. Linkevičius kirto jo autoriui ekspertai 107 52
Prie S.Skvernelio namų įžeidžiančius užrašus paišęs vyras – buvęs R.Masiulio ir D.Grybauskaitės patarėjas 15min 52 49
Prezidentas V. Landsbergis pasveikino G. Nausėdą ir įgėlė Latvijai su Estija ekspertai 51 46
Prezidentui Vytautui Landsbergiui skirta stipendija, kad sukurtų „Siaubiamiškio pasakas“ ekspertai 54 45
Ant Vilniaus pėsčiųjų tako – Sauliui Skverneliui skirtas nemalonus užrašas 15min 47 45
Buvęs žaliasis valstietis prieš Seimo rinkimus sustiprino liberalų gretas ekspertai 49 43
Premjeras Saulius Skvernelis: Lietuva turi būti tarp pirmųjų valstybių, į kurias būtų tiekiama COVID-19 vakcina ekspertai 56 43
Lietuvos prezidentė Dalia Grybauskaitė: visas šitas paskolas iki 2050 metų reikės grąžinti ekspertai 49 41

The most active IPs during June – July – August

The tendency remains the same: the most active commentators (IPs) were of the fringe website ekspertai.eu. The most of comments were generated in Lithuania; two IP addresses are registered in Dublin, Ireland, two IPs from Moscow, Russia. The full list of IPs can be provided upon the request.

Miscellaneous

On 20  August there were 1 278 892 real users of internet in Lithuania. Delfi.lt is an absolute leader among news websites, with 680 390 real users and the increase in page views and visits. The second among news websites is 15min (516 084), followed by Lrytas.lt  news website (358 206 real users).  It should be noted that, the number of real users, page views and visits of those dropped in August to compare with April when the country was in Covid19 lockdown and worked online.

Source: Lithuania, Gemius S.A.

Time share-Internet Real users Page views Visits
Internet 100% 1 278 892 40 958 020 6 665 894
Delfi 29.51% 680 390 8 298 076 1 545 564
15min 13.63% 516 084 4 356 453 950 594
Lrytas 11.92% 358 206 5 372 091 792 255
TV3 5.91% 349 210 1 390 086 555 496
LRT 5.47% 272 454  2 241 187 160 013
Lnk.lt 1.85% 17 956 84 299 22 187
Diena.lt 1.14% 126 284 456 788 162 903

Source: Lithuania, Gemius S.A.: gemius Audience, 2020-08-20 [2]

[1] Media outlet does not show ips

[2] https://rating.gemius.com/lt/tree/59