Russians Get Conflicting News on the Ukraine War as Telegram Turns Into an Information Battlefield
Russians are seeing two versions of the war in Ukraine through one of the biggest platforms for news in the country, the social media and chat app Telegram. One version comes from state-owned and pro-Kremlin channels, the other from what remains of Russia’s independent media.
Telegram has taken on a bigger role for many Russians because it remains accessible—and uncensored—as the Russian government has cracked down on foreign and independent media and heavily restricted access to social-media services such as Instagram and Facebook. Telegram said in March that 7% to 8% of its user base is in Russia, which works out to about a quarter of the country’s population of roughly 145 million.