Deterring disinformation? Lessons from Lithuania’s countermeasures since 2014 (excerpts), 2021

2. Russian disinformation in
Lithuania: Context and objectives

[..]

Television remains the main information source: a 2020 survey suggested that 66 per cent of the population watch TV daily, while an additional 13 per cent watch it two to three times a week.4 Five per cent of respondents reported that they watched Russian TV daily, and another six per cent claimed to watch it two to three times a week. A 2016 survey
conducted among Lithuanian Russians and Poles suggested a sharp contrast to the general population: 57 per cent of Russians and 42 per cent of Poles said that they watched Russian television on a daily basis, while 26 per cent of Russians and 23 per cent of Poles said that they watched it several
times a week.5

4 Kojala (ed.), Geopolitikos ir tarptautinės politikos bei grėsmių suvokimo tyrimas, 46-48.
5 Vaišnys et al., Rusijos propaganda: analizė, įvertinimas, rekomendacijos, 155.

Even though the Lithuanian Russian minority is much smaller compared to the other Baltic states (around 6 per cent in Lithuania compared to around 25 per cent in Latvia and Estonia), it is still quite a sizeable target audience. As suggested, the Polish minority (around 6 per cent of the population) fall under the same target group, due to historical consequences and their media consumption habits.

[..]

Four main objectives of Russian disinformation
in Lithuania could be identified:9

  1. To create tensions between different groups in
    Lithuanian society (primarily the Lithuanian
    majority and national minorities).

9 Lietuvos Respublikos valstybės saugumo departamentas, ’Grėsmių nacionaliniam saugumui vertinimas’ Assessment of the national threats by the State Security Department, 9, https://www.vsd.lt/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Gresmiu-vertinimas-2014.pdf. Last accessed 20 April 2021.


Hybrid CoE Paper 6. April 2021. ISBN (web) 978-952-7282-70-0 Link: https://www.hybridcoe.fi/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/20210427_Hybrid-CoE-Paper-6_Deterring_disinformation_WEB.pdf

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