Iraqis SeekTransparency from News Sources

VIENNA, Virginia – December 7, 2011 -The 2011 IREX Audience Measurement Survey conducted by D3 Systems (D3) for IREX reveals that the people of Iraq are seeking greater transparency in the news and information they receive and want access to information from a source that is not influenced or controlled by the government.

This demand for openness is specifically directed at political and economic news, with a particular desire for transparent information related to local and national corruption in Iraq.

The fieldwork for the survey was conducted in May 2011 and is a follow up to IREX’s 2009 media survey which focused on understanding how news and information is consumed in Iraq. Television remains the primary source of news and information for people in Iraq, followed by Radio. Ninety percent of Iraqis report using TV to access news and information at least once a week while 37% report using Radio. Newspaper readership remains low in Iraq; 46% of the population does not read newspapers at all.

The Internet is primarily used for social purposes (i.e., email, Facebook, and instant messaging), but the Internet’s value as a news source is not to be underestimated, as four in ten Iraqis report using the Internet to access the latest news. For example, Iraq’s youth (age 15-24), who by most estimates make up at least a third of the population, use New Media sources significantly more than the general population. The 2011 Iraq Media Survey looks at this group and collectively describes them as the New Media Youth. They spend nearly twice as much time using the Internet for news than the general population – 18% of the general population spends more than 45 minutes a day using the Internet for news compared to 31% of the New Media Youth cohort.

Additional information from the survey about the Iraqi media environment was presented at a press conference held in Erbil, Iraq on November 17, 2011. The conference was attended by more than 60 Iraqi  media outlets. A copy of the presentation is available for download:

The 2011 IREX Audience Measurement Survey is a national quantitative study on media usage, habits and attitudes of people age 15 and older with a total sample size of 3,000 individuals. The sample included a random sample of 2,600 individuals in the 18 provinces of Iraq as well as a booster of 400 Iraqi youth using new media (3,000 persons total). The margin of error is +/- 1.79 percent at 95% confidence. Using the American Association of Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) outcome calculator, the refusal rate for this study is 32%. Fieldwork was conducted from May 2-13, 2011 by trained, native Iraqi interviewers located in offices in Iraq managed by KA Research Limited. It is important to note that the “Arab Spring” was an active media event in Iraq that occurred during fieldwork and the death of Osama Bin Laden occurred same day the survey was launched.

IREX supports Iraqi media outlets, journalists, media managers, and free-press advocates in their efforts to build a sustainable and professional media system. For more information on IREX or its programs in Iraq:

For more information about D3 Systems or KA Research Limited: