The invasion of Ukraine has led to a dramatic rise in numbers of people turning to Channel 4 News’ social media channels and its evening bulletins.
Editor of Channel 4 News Esme Wren said: "This is Channel 4 at its very best. Our journalists are on the front line reporting the reality of what's happening to people caught in the middle of this terrible situation.
“It’s vital that UK audiences witness the impact of this invasion on the lives of ordinary people but equally important that we bring an understanding of the wider implications this crisis has on the world.”
Channel 4 News’ weekday evening bulletins have seen a dramatic 103% rise in viewers aged 16-34 vs the same time last year, an increase in its total audience of 54% and an 82% increase in viewers aged 16-24*.
Channel 4 News’ content across social media platforms – key to reaching younger audiences – has attracted millions of views across YouTube, Facebook, TikTok and Twitter.
As well as highlighting the devastation caused by Russian bombing, the resistance of the Ukrainian people and the growing refugee crisis as well as interviews with Ukraine’s Deputy Head of the President’s Office Rostyslav Shurma and the country’s Head of Foreign Policy, Ihor Zhovkva.
Louisa Compton, Channel 4's Head of News and Current Affairs and Specialist Factual and Sport, said: “Reports from Channel 4 News journalists on the ground in Ukraine have brought home the terrible human cost already inflicted by Russia as well as the determination and courage of the Ukrainian people.
“These stories have clearly touched our audiences, particularly younger viewers and it’s at times of crisis like this when the importance of trusted, factually accurate public service broadcasting come to the fore, particularly on social media channels.”
Shocking footage of a Russian armoured vehicle crushing a civilian car with a driver inside on Channel 4 News’ Facebook page has been viewed 8.2 million times.
And the page also showed that people are keen to understand the background to the conflict. A two-minute film entitled “Russia Ukraine invasion - this is how we got here in 160 seconds” - explaining the basics of the invasion has attracted nearly 7.6 million views.
Other statistics from Channel 4 News’ social media channels include:
- A report highlighting volunteers resisting the Russian advance on Channel 4 News’ YouTube channel attracted more than 4.6m views (as of 2.3.22)
- Three pieces of content on Channel 4’s TikTok channel (Putin announcing the invasion; British PM Boris Johnson’s reaction to the invasion; an explanation about NATO and whether World War is likely) have attracted a total of more than 5.5m views (2.3.22)
- There have been 1.5m views for the main Ukraine reports and interviews and 50k views for a film on African students facing discrimination and 1.1m for the lunchtime bulletin (2.3.22)
- A cutdown of a mayor rallying residents to fight had more than 15k views on Twitter and 423k views on TikTok.
- A report on Channel 4 News’ Facebook page highlighting US President Joe Biden’s announcement of sanctions on Russia has attracted more than five million views (2.3.22)
- A video on Channel 4 News’ Facebook page featuring former boxing world champion Wladimir Klitschko’s plea for the world to act to stop the war drew 6.5m views (2.3.22)
Channel 4 News has 5.2m followers on Facebook, 2.4m followers on Twitter, 1.9m subscribers on YouTube and 79k followers on TikTok.
Notes to Editors
* The increases in Channel 4 News audiences for the 7pm bulletin were for Thursday 24 February, Friday 25 February, Monday 28 February, Tuesday 1 March and Wednesday 2 March. The average total audience, year on year, increased from 589k to 905k, the 16-34 audience increased year on year from 37k to 75k and the average audience of 16-24 year olds changed year on year from 11k to 20k.