Photo 14:58 31 Oct 2023

Research shows increase in number of social media posts in Ukrainian

In 2023, there is more of the Ukrainian language on social media

The Ukrainian language is used more on social media this year.

The Ukrainian language clearly dominates almost all the most popular social networks, Rubryka reports, citing the data of the study "Ukrainian language on social media in 2020, 2022, and 2023" conducted by the Center for Content Analysis.

At the same time, the research shows that the position of the Russian language remains quite strong: every second post is written in Russian.

According to the authors of the study, the position of the Russian language is ensured by posts in the occupied territories and on the banned social media "Vkontakte" and "Odnoklasnyki" in Ukraine.

On Facebook, Twitter (Х), and Instagram, Ukrainian has become more frequent. The biggest "language revolution" occurred on Instagram, where over 90% of posts are now published in Ukrainian. On Facebook and Twitter (X), it's 75-80%.

Last year, the share of the Ukrainian language in these social networks was 65-70%, and in 2020, it fluctuated between 15-25%.

"Obviously, the tendency of the increasing share of the Ukrainian language will continue, although perhaps at a more modest pace," said sociologists.

YouTube has also shown radical progress over the past year.

Last year, the share of the Ukrainian language on social media was 65-70%

A study conducted in June 2022 found no changes in this social network compared to the pre-war period. However, almost a year and a half later, it can be stated that the Ukrainian language has significantly strengthened its position there as well. Earlier, only 5% of materials were published in Ukrainian; now, it's almost half (45%).

The share of the Ukrainian language on TikTok has also doubled. If earlier the ratio was 1 to 2 in favor of Russian, now it is the opposite: 2 to 1 in favor of Ukrainian.

Russian social networks banned in Ukraine — "Vkontakte" and "Odnoklasniki" — no longer have Ukrainian. As sociologists note, they do not see any prerequisites and grounds for the Ukrainian language strengthening on these sites.

It is also important that the number of Ukrainian posts is increasing thanks to the eastern regions of the country.

In the west of the country, a radical increase in the share of the Ukrainian language took place in the first months after the start of the Russian invasion. As of June 2022, the share of posts in the Ukrainian language there exceeded 85%. However, the situation has practically not changed over the past year: the share of posts in Russian continues to fluctuate between 10-15%.

An increase in the number of posts in Ukrainian was recorded in all eastern regions. The Sumy region showed the greatest progress (+16%).

In the Kyiv region, almost 84% of posts are published in Ukrainian. The region was ahead of the western Zakarpattia region. In Kyiv itself, only 2/3 of posts are published in Ukrainian.

For the first time, the Ukrainian language has a stronger position in the Kharkiv, Dnipropetrovsk, and Mykolaiv regions.

The Ukrainian language now prevails in all regions except for the partially occupied Donetsk, Luhansk, and Zaporizhzhia regions, Crimea, and the Odesa region.

YouTube has shown radical progress over the past year

However, the Odesa region showed the greatest growth over the past year: the share of posts in Ukrainian increased from 27% in June 2022 to 49% in October 2023.

The Kherson region witnessed a slight drop in the share of the Ukrainian language (from 58% to 53%), which is obviously related to the occupation of part of the territory.

For the analysis, posts were collected from foreign social media widespread in Ukraine, like Facebook, Twitter (X), Instagram, Youtube, and TikTok, and from the banned but still used Russian platforms — "Vkontakte" and "Odnoklasnyki."

A total of 1.17 million posts were collected and analyzed, which contained the named lexemes and were written in the period from September 20 to October 20, 2023, by users who indicated Ukraine (or Ukrainian regions, including occupied) as their place of residence in their profile. Regions were determined in the same way.

Similar research with the same set of lexemes was first conducted by the Content Analysis Center in October 2020 and subsequently repeated in June 2022.

Rubryka reported that a game for learning Ukrainian dialects has appeared in the "Let's Do Text" app.

It was also reported that the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy wants to abandon the use of Russian fonts and create a bank of Ukrainian fonts.

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