President Trump’s obsession with media metrics (see regular tweets about failing newspapers and plunging Nielsens) suggests that he’ll be quite pleased with new numbers reported by the Russian news agency Interfax. For the first time since 2011, Russian President Vladimir Putin was not the most-discussed person across Russian media last week. That honor went to Trump.
Trump was mentioned 202,000 times to Putin’s 147,700 times — almost 37 percent more frequently.
Note: Two unemployed American politicians came in third and seventh.
The report credits Trump’s inauguration with his moving into the top spot, although that doesn’t always happen for incoming American presidents. “Note that the last US presidential elections have attracted the maximum media attention,” the Interfax report reads, according to Google Translate. “The election campaigns of Barack Obama and his victory in the elections is not so widely publicized.”
It is the case that Russian presidents usually dominate the rankings, though. Putin has been atop the standings for the past six years. From 2008 to 2011, the top slot was held by then-President Dmitry Medvedev.
This comports with data from Google. A look at search interest in the country over the past month shows Trump overtaking Putin at the time of the inauguration.
Russian interest in Trump is probably part of the reason the White House continually insisted that his inauguration was the most-watched of all time. It was the first inauguration to air on Russian television, according to the Guardian. (That Obama’s weren’t may be part of the reason he never broke through.)
Congratulations to the president on the ratings victory. Let’s see if he tweets it.