04 Dec

Frequency of using the Internet and social media as an information source in Eurasia, 2015

The EBRD Life in Transition survey changed their wording on this question quite a bit this wave, so it is difficult to compare to the past. But here I present the frequency of Eurasians using the Internet and social media as an information source.  The question says: “People use different sources to learn what is going on in their country and the world. For each of the following sources, please indicate how often you use it:” with a variety of choices from never to daily.

This is Internet

and social media

It is hard to say if people understood the difference between the Internet and social media. I’d guess that they did not. I eyeball’d the crosstabs and it seems that the nevers in both groups are pretty heavily overlapping.

And, of course, anyone that knows anything about media consumption knows that the vast majority of people get their news from TV. Nonetheless, I wanted to also provide a bit of context for the South Caucasus, Russia, and Turkey. If you’re interested in other countries, please contact me.

More to come!

04 Dec

PC/tablet ownership in Eurasia in 2015

A few years ago I made some graphics and a blog post showing personal computer ownership in Europe and Eurasia based on the EBRD’s Life in Transition survey.

Last week I presented these data to some graduate students and that reminded me that I should update this! There are 2015-2016 data available and the picture has changed quite a bit. Also, notably, the question wording changed. Now people are asked if anyone in their household owns a personal computer, laptop, or tablet and if they don’t is it because they cannot afford it or for another reason. I present both here.

Link to the original image

01 Sep

Facebook in Armenia, September 2017

I’ve written some blog posts in the past where I explain how I use Facebook ads to estimate how many Facebook users there are in a particular country. Here’s a September 2017 update for Armenia!

As of September 2017, there are about 1,100,000 Facebook users in Armenia, according to Facebook. That is 37% of the total population, and 34% of the population over age 14 (Facebook technically isn’t available to those under 13.)

As far as gender, 36% of the total male population, or 46% of males over age 14 are on Facebook. 40% of the total female population, or 49% of the female 14+ population. So there are some gender differences, but probably within the margin of error.

Just looking at the 15-24 year olds, 89% of them are on the site, 82% of young men and 97% of young women.

01 Sep

Facebook in Azerbaijan, September 2017

It has been quite awhile since I last blogged about Facebook use in the Caucasus.  Again, here is a guide to how I get these data.

According to Facebook, as of September 2017, around 2,600,000 Azerbaijanis,  27% of the total population, or more accurately, 26% of the population over age 14, are on Facebook. A year ago it was 1,500,000, 15% of the over 14 population. That’s a huge leap.

Half of all Azerbaijani men (over age 14) are on Facebook (well, 49.73%) and 22.5% of Azerbaijani women (over age 14) are on Facebook. This has been the trend for as long as I’ve been tracking this.

Looking at just youth, about 61% of Azerbaijanis ages 15-24 use Facebook. 80% of males that age and 41% of females that age. In September of 2016, 58% of young men were on the site while 31% of young women were. It seems that there was a huge growth in use by young men, but much less with young women.

As always, these numbers are to be taken with a grain of salt. This is information from Facebook ads.



12 Jan

Facebook in Azerbaijan, January 2017


It has been quite awhile since I last blogged about Facebook use in the Caucasus. Two interesting changes have happened: one, Facebook now also gives Instagram data and two, Facebook now reports on number of users in an average day. Thus numbers may seem lower. Again, here is a guide to how I get these data.

According to Facebook, around 980,000 Azerbaijanis are active on the site daily. That’s 10% of the total population. 14% of Azerbaijani men and 6.5% of Azerbaijani women use the site daily. As has been the trend in Azerbaijan, about twice as many men use the site as women do.

Looking at just youth, about 22% of Azerbaijanis ages 15-24 use Facebook daily. 46% of males that age and 12% of females that age. The male percentage has remained steady over the time that I’ve been looking at this, but it appears that the percentage of young women using the site has dropped. Currently, 4 times as many young men use the site than young women.

According to the same Facebook ad system, approximately 770,000 Azerbaijanis use Instagram daily – 470,000 men (10%) and 290,000 women (6%). These numbers are actually pretty close to the numbers that use Facebook.

24% of 15-24 year old Azerbaijanis use Instagram daily, 31% of young men and 17% of young women. While certainly there are likely overlaps, it does appear that Instagram is more popular than Facebook with young Azerbaijani women.

As always, these numbers are to be taken with a grain of salt.

14 Dec

Gender-based violence in Azerbaijan

A colleague asked about research on gender-based violence in Azerbaijan and I started to answer her e-mail with some results from the 2011 CRRC Social capital, media, and gender survey, but quickly realized I might as well write a blog post on this! I did an analysis on some of the gender items a number of years ago that may be of interest as well.

Gender-based violence is not my area of expertise. However, I do think that it is incredibly difficult to understand these issues through survey data. Nonetheless, the results are telling. Unfortunately I don’t have the means/SD on these, just frequencies, but if there is interest, I can report them at a later date.

I think that it would also be interesting to look at this by region (capitol, urban cities, villages) as well as by education and income level. But that is for another day. On with the results!

While over half of Azerbaijani adult respondents believed that there are not times where it is okay for a woman to be beaten…

Unsurprisingly, two-thirds of women are not keen on this, while less than half of men are.

Yet, despite the answers about there being times where a woman may deserve to be beaten, It seems that some (over a third) believe that a woman should tolerate violence in order to keep the family together.

Although it appears that women and men may slightly disagree on this point.

But when actually reporting on the practice, despite the mixed feelings about women deserving to be beaten and possibly reasons why they may deserve it, there is some evidence that people does believe that beatings are common. This graphic shows beliefs about how common both husband/partner beatings are, as well as mother-in-law beatings. The high “don’t knows” are important to acknowledge here.

When broken down by gender, many more men “don’t know” if husband beatings are occurring.

And it appears that men do not have as strong of a sense if mother-in-law beatings are occurring, which is logical. 


22 Oct

Black Mirror Season 3 is here


The new season of the series Black Mirror is here. This dystopian British series is fantastic. It dealt so well with tensions related to technology in our lives that I organized my winter 2016 CommLead professional MA class around it. We watched episodes, did activities around the themes of the episode, read related pieces about the ethics of technology, and created multimedia projects creating new episodes of the show.

Here’s the syllabus.

29 Sep

Popular media on technology and society

Over the past few years I’ve moved away from assigning scholarly work in my undergraduate classes and now most of the outside of class materials are popular media on the topic. I’ve found that a very good journalistic article on technology and society is much more likely to be read and understood than a scholarly piece. I then work theory and scholarship into my lecture on the topic and students almost always have to find and incorporate empirical pieces into their output (a project, a written assignment, a presentation, etc.)
This works especially well for me because I love longform journalism and well done videos and podcasts.
In fact, I’ve been collecting such materials for years.

Recently I decided to make my list of such materials public. And more importantly, I categorized the materials to the best of my ability.

As of September 2016, there are over 5k links here!

Please enjoy and feel free to comment.

Google Sheets link