The most-read news pieces in 2022 – a record-breaking year for KoSSev

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An all-time record – a succinct but very accurate description of last year’s reader statistics of the KoSSev portal taking into account all nine years of its existence. Users – 1,858,537; sessions – 9,567,190; page views: 17,687,126.

The three most-read articles published by the KoSSev portal in 2022 are as follows:

After not coming to work for six years, and being paid, 32 workers of Serb ethnicity put to work   (56,482)

After meeting with the opposition, Kurti „encourages“ Serbs in the north to take „legitimate RKS“ plates instead of „Milosevic’s“ ones (33,664)

Srbija Danas – how a map with a dotted line turned to Kurti admitting that Kosovo is Serbia (33,622)

While the beginning of the year was marked by the war in Ukraine and the Pristina-led campaign to urgently make Kosovo a member of NATO, the Council of Europe, and obtain the recognition of the five remaining EU members, the second half of the year abounded with news about license plates, followed by barricades, the withdrawal of Serbs from Kosovo institutions, the deployment of Albanian members of the Kosovo Police in the north, arrests, propaganda, spins and fake news. As a result, the top three most-read news pieces in 2022 were published from August to December.

When it comes to our readership, according to Google, the majority of our readers come from Serbia, followed by Kosovo, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. This also marks the first time that a country in the region took third place. Most of our readers come from Belgrade, and an unknown location Google defines as – ‘not set’.

In 2022 – as was the case for the year before, our German readership increased, but the most pronounced growth was recorded in Albania. Our readers mostly come from countries of the region, as well as Austria and Switzerland.

Another positive change worth noting is that for the first time in 2022, in two separate months, we managed to record over a million sessions per month. The sessions were recorded in August and December, the two most critical months in last year’s political crisis in the north.

December is a record holder for the number of site visitors: 333,633 users, 1,405,984 sessions, and 2,863,461 page views.

The three most-read news pieces in December include:

“KFOR: It’s useful to remind that the Serbian Army does not need permits to reach the administrative line, but the KSF needs one to come to the North.” This news arrived before the barricades were dismantled and the tensions decreased.

One of the most-read news in the last month of 2022: “K.Kosova: Arrest – he lied about his identity and sold property worth more than one million euros in Caglavica.” The piece is actually a translation of an article penned by our colleagues from Klan Kosova.

Another report from the Pristina media that we published within the Kosovo press section, and the most-read text in 2022, was also the highest-read news piece in November.

For years, the Kosovo media pointed out that hundreds of workers were receiving wages from the Kosovo budget while not actually doing or going to their jobs – from municipalities to ministries, the Kosovo government, and the assembly.

Just when this text was published, revealing that 32 workers were engaged at the Kosovo Ministry of Education to start doing the jobs they were paid for, two days later the news arrived from the north: the Serbs have finally left the Kosovo institutions.

In the month of November, however, this piece did not attract as much attention from our readers as the following text: “Crashed into a store with his car, firefighters pulled him out.”

Other well-read news pieces this month: “Three nurses arrested for mistreating a woman in a nursing home in Pec.” The news horrified the regional and Kosovo public. The nurses were arrested in the meantime, only to be released at the end of November.

Money, drugs, and license plates dominated in October. The most read text in this period on our portal was “Svecla: At the end of this month, there will be no more illegal plates, but also new escalations.”Young people set to receive a little less than 50 euros before the New Year” – takes the second place, with the third spot going to – “KM – arrested for 10 kg of drugs in a raid near the Technical School.”

In September, the „star“ of the month was the president of Serbia – “Vucic: For the first time, people in uniform appeared in the north, all the women came to greet them and say ‘freedom, we welcome you’.”

“Svecla: Vucic drew a target on those who took RKS; the movement of those who do not take them by October 31 will be hindered” – another well-read text in September.

Joining this duo with spectacular statements is none other than the famous former deputy of NISMA, a man who describes himself as a journalist, known to the Serbian public for his inflammatory statements – “Milaim Zeka: In addition to ASM, Vucic will also get an ASM for the north.”

Although August was marked by the removal of the barricades erected on July 31, the most-read news piece this month was the text of our colleagues from Radio Mitrovica Sever: “Simple verification of seniority pay by pin code.” This news supports the claim that citizens are more interested in everyday life issues rather than high politics and political crises.

“After meeting with the opposition, Kurti ‘encourages’ Serbs in the north to take ‘legitimate RKS plates’ instead of ‘Milosevic’s’ ones” – the second most read text in August. Although a political topic, this news also concerned the daily life of citizens in the north. Former Kosovo Prime Minister Haradinaj takes the third spot – “Haradinaj: Intensify communication with Quint, the Serbs, above all those from the north and avoid war-mongering rhetoric at any cost.”

Unlike the current Kosovan PM, during the entire crisis in the north, Ramush Haradinaj sent messages in a somewhat soothing tone, which the citizens in the north also noticed. In order to explain the inflammatory nature of the leader’s statements, one could often hear the comment ‘When Haradinaj seems as the more moderate one’.

Although people usually go on vacation in July and August, that was not the case in the north. Before the barricades were installed, warning sirens could be heard for hours. “The warning siren in North Mitrovica” was the most-read text in July. Perhaps, the text would have been the most-read piece of the year, if the KoSSev portal had not undergone a 17-hour-long DDOS attack right after the news was published.

The activities of the so-called Northern Brigade, which continues to announce that it will „defend the North“, took the second place – “N.Mitrovica: Flyers proclaiming ‘No surrender, KM remains!’ appeared on the citizens’ cars this morning.”

The news piece – “Kurti to K.Serbs: What we’re starting on August 1st, Serbia began implementing 11 years ago, trust your government” came in third place in July.

The license plates crisis intensified last year when the Kosovo government decided to introduce reciprocal measures in June. The most read news this month – “Kosovo government: Re-registration of vehicles from Serbian plates to RKS, stickers for vehicles from Serbia, declaration sheets instead of Serbian IDs in Kosovo.”

The other two most read news pieces are part of the standard ‘popular’ police reports: “Fight in North Mitrovica, after being hammered in the head, he was urgently transferred to Belgrade”, and: “Policeman found dead in an apartment in North Mitrovica.”

The pieces on police reports were also highly read in May. In fact, all three of the most read texts this month focused on murder, funerals, and accidents: “Double family murder in North Mitrovica,” followed by “The funeral of a murdered family in North Mitrovica tomorrow”, as well as “A serious accident near Gazivode, police details to come.”

News related to welfare payments and doubled welfare payments were readers’ favorites in the month of April.

The top three read pieces in the month include: “Kurti: Double welfare for April and 100 euros for pensioners, students and workers in the private and public sector”; “Payout of parental, child benefits and other social benefits on Wednesday”; and “Payout of unemployment benefits on Thursday.”

A kind of „end“ of the two-year coronavirus pandemic, i.e. the complete abolition of curfew in Kosovo, was the most-read article on our portal in the month of March – “New measures – no more curfew, from the 7th weddings allowed, night clubs to open.”

On the other hand, the beginning of this year’s campaign calling for a boycott of Serbian products in Kosovo was the second most read text in the same month – „Besa Besi: When a child is filmed for an advertisement about being poisoned by Serb products.”

The news about the protest in North Mitrovica organized by Srpska Lista against Pristina’s decision to ban the holding of Serbia’s elections on the territory of Kosovo was the third most read text that captured the attention of our readers in March: “RKS, KM, CA and BG buses entered K. Mitrovica, protest starting.”

As the world public focused on the start of the war in Ukraine in February, one of the most read articles this month on our portal was related to this conflict, that is, Pristina’s campaign and accusations against Serbia due to „its close relations with Russia“.

“The crisis in Ukraine prompts Pristina: ‘If Serbia thinks of attacking Kosovo, it will also face NATO’“ – the title of the most-read news in the second month of 2022.

News about the removal of pandemic measures was also well-read during this period. The second most read – “The Government of Kosovo eases measures.”

The third piece of news on the list for February was related to the mass departure of police officers abroad due to inadequate working conditions, to which the President of the KP Trade Union drew attention: “Zeqiri – More than 1,000 police officers in Kosovo quit their jobs, some of them requested visas.”

The so far largest seizure of cryptocurrency machines in the north of Kosovo, but also stricter anti-covid measures and the search for a person with 30 arrest warrants – these are the texts that were read the most at the beginning of last year: 272 cryptocurrency mining machines seized in a village in the Leposavic region,” “Stricter measures: To enter Kosovo, you need three doses or two with a test, a curfew from 10 p.m.,” and “Police searching for a thief with 30 arrest warrants.”

The day with the highest traffic in 2022, oddly enough, was at the very end of the year – December 28, when 53,739 users visited the KoSSev portal, 85,345 sessions, and 162,407 page views were recorded.

The day was marked by events ahead of the removal of the 20-day barricades at more than 14 locations in the north of Kosovo.

In addition to the record number of readers and website visits, KoSSev’s reach on social networks was also the highest in the previous year, primarily on Instagram and Facebook.

When it comes to Facebook, we not only met but exceeded the set goal of 50,000 followers – reaching a total of 52,270 followers on this social network.

On Instagram – a platform we’ve given special attention to in the last two years, we gained more than 4,000 followers in 2022. Now, KoSSev has a total of 13,280 followers on Instagram.

As for Twitter, in 2022 we managed to top the number of 10,000 followers. On December 31st, KoSSev had 11,040 followers on this social network.

On YouTube, a platform we were least committed to in the previous period, we started the year with 2,769 followers and ended it with 4,368. Our goal in 2023 is to reach 7,000 followers by December 31st.

We thank everyone for their trust, those who support our work, but also those who do not approve of it. Together, you encourage us to be even better in this and the coming years.

Preuzimanje i objavljivanje tekstova sa portala KoSSev nije dozvoljeno bez navođenja izvora. Hvala na poštovanju etike novinarske profesije.