In Armenia, journalists and the media in general are quite passive when it comes to making use of one of the world's most active social networks — Twitter. Though in many countries this is the platform used to receive and spread information, in Armenia, it continues to surrender its spot to other social networks such as Odnoklassniki and Facebook.
On the other hand, very often it's information disseminated through Twitter that becomes available to all, since this platform, unlike Facebook, is open — tweets are available to everyone, even those who don't have a Twitter account. Tweets are also indexed by search engines.
For this reason people abroad keep up to date on important events in Armenia also through Twitter and news outlets having a presence on this platform have the opportunity to become more accessible to those readers who don't already comprise their core audience.
Many news outlets in Armenia already use Twitter. However, the overwhelming majority uses it as a simple means of broadcasting, having their newsfeed automatically publish headlines on the social networking site. Only Panarmenian, Radio Van and Epress.am post such tweets from time to time in which a human hand is apparent.
Panarmenian and Epress.am at one time even used hashtags, which generally aren't used by news outlets in Armenia today.
In addition, many local news outlets tweet only in one language, while others mix different languages in a single newsfeed. A majority of news outlets doesn't post a link to its Twitter account on its website, though a link to a Facebook page has become obligatory.
Others link to only one of their Twitter accounts, even though they have different accounts for different languages (for example: Panarmenian and Tert.am). News.am, which links to its Twitter account from its website, has an odd Twitter username: "Constantine Amirakia". Having published a total of only 7 tweets over two days in March (including links to various other Armenian news sites), the account is now inactive.
The list below includes links to the Twitter accounts of several leading Armenian news sites; and the number of their tweets, followers, and those whom they follow (in many cases this is a mechanical figure since the editors of these news outlets don't respond to tweets by other users).
The figures below were retrieved around noon on July 22. Also included is the rating of the news outlets' Twitter page, according to the Klout Score, which is based on the number of references and links by other users, which also changes over time.
1in.am: 90,796 tweets, following 336, has 1648 followers, Klout Score 45
Aravot: 9,756 tweets, following 41, has 327 followers, Klout Score 41
Tert.am (Armenian): 61,366 tweets, following 1931, has 4229 followers, Klout Score 39
Tert.am (Russian): 32,715 tweets, following 351, has 590 followers, Klout Score 29
Tert.am (English):16,726 tweets, following 0, has 239 followers, Klout Score 20
RFE/RL's Armenian Service (Azatutyun): 20,672 tweets, following 31, has1,323 followers, Klout Score 37
CivilNet: 5,102 tweets, following 397, has 483 followers, Klout Score 32
Panarmenian.net Live: 15,511 tweets, following 447, has 941 followers, Klout Score 29
Panarmenian (Russian): 44,645 tweets, following 4, has 507 followers, Klout Score 22
Panarmenian (Armenian): 13,149 tweets, following 6, has 136 followers, no Klout Score
A1+: 36,490 tweets, following 3, has 718 followers, Klout Score 24
Lurer.com:13,880 tweets, following 988, has 861 followers, Klout Score 23
Radio Van: 10,080 tweets, following 1,794, has 1806 followers, Klout Score 21
7or blog (tweets not only links to its blog but from all its news content): 27,769 tweets, following 68, has 756 followers, Klout Score 21
Epress.am:15,661 tweets, following 52, has 468 followers, Klout Score 16
Novosti-Armenia: 4,566 tweets, following 148, has 220 followers, Klout Score 16
Hetq Online: 361 tweets, following 21, has 32 followers, Klout Score 14
Arka Telecom: 2,077 tweets, following 950, has 326 followers, Klout Score 12
Hraparak.am: 14,511 tweets, following 230, has 389 followers, Klout Score 11
Mediamax: 2,462 tweets, following 0, has 95 followers, Klout Score 10
The views expressed in the column are those of the author's and do not necessarily reflect the views of Media.am.