Foreign press – can’t you not believe?

For several months before the start of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, many international news agencies warned the world and us about such a danger. Facts and data of foreign intelligence, satellite images, analytical reports were given. Someone believed and prepared, someone, on the contrary, accused the foreign press of instilling negativity and unnecessary fear among the Ukrainian population.

On the morning of February 24, everything finally became clear. So nowadays, in conversations and disputes, you can often hear the argument: “it was written about in …” followed by the names of famous world newspapers, magazines or websites. Very often, we can safely refer to these publications as reliable sources of information, but you cannot call such an argument indisputable. The fact is that, just like Ukrainian newspapers, foreign ones have their own specialization. Some talk about the fashion and personal life of movie stars, others are immersed in the military and political life of the world.

Before completely trusting the information received from any of the foreign sources, it is worth checking:

  1. Was such an article really published in the publication and when?
  2. If you are not familiar with this magazine, newspaper or website before, take a closer look at its history, topics of publications and their quality.
  3. If you do not know the language of the publication, check how high-quality its translation was and, of course, do not trust automatic translation systems.

Also, it is worth remembering that during the years of living behind the iron curtain, many people, unfortunately, have formed the opinion that any foreign product, including information products, is of high quality. Therefore, it seems to them that an article published in a foreign language, even on a reader’s forum, is a reliable source, which, of course, is not the case. Such messages are subjective and reflect solely the author’s opinion. Therefore, before trusting foreign publications, it is worth studying their work more carefully and only then using publications and translations in your informational and educational activities.

This publication was prepared within the framework of the project “Citizenship for Democratization” with the assistance of the European Union, which is carried out by the Institute for Economic Research and Policy Consultation. The content of this publication is the sole responsibility of the NGO “Volyn Foundation” and in no way reflects the point of view of the European Union and the Institute of Economic Research and Political Consultation.

Anna Danylchuk, NGO “Volyn Foundation”

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