"Direct Line" and Putin's big press conference will be held on December 14
"On December 14, Vladimir Putin will sum up the results of the year. It will be a program, still a project of television channels, and it will be a combined format of the "Direct Line" and the final press conference of the president," he told reporters.
Questions from citizens for the "direct line" will begin to be accepted on December 1.
"Journalists will be sitting in the studio, which will be specially created for this purpose - these are Russian regional journalists, all regions of Russia, federal journalists, as well as foreign journalists who are accredited in Moscow and continue their work in Moscow," Peskov said.
He announced the venue of the event later.
When asked about his timekeeping , he replied: "The "Straight Line" does not have any clear timekeeping in advance. This is always a very long and meaningful event of a special nature."
Questions to the "direct line" can be asked by toll-free number 8 800 200 4040, it will be possible to send a free SMS with a question to the number 04040. All ways to send a question are listed on the event's website.
"We also have an Android phone app there, it will work this year, and other options. All this is described in great detail on the website I mentioned. Telephone operators and volunteers will receive calls in the call center of the program. And the innovation of this year is that the All-Russian Popular Front has joined the project," Peskov said, adding that ONF employees will also collect questions.
"You will ask me why ONF? Because for a number of years, after the completion of the "Direct Line", the ONF has been processing all citizens' appeals for a year until the last question," the presidential press secretary said.
He added that the ONF specialists, together with volunteers, will continue to accept citizens' appeals after the completion of the program. "They will work for a whole year in order not to ignore any appeal," he said.
Citizens' appeals will also be received through social networks - VKontakte, Odnoklassniki. "Through them, too, via a chatbot, you can send a video question or a text question to President Putin," Peskov added.
In 2022, for the first time since 2001, there was no annual press conference of the president. The upcoming event will be held for the first time in the last two years and will be Putin's 18th "big press conference".
The combined format was first tested in the pandemic in 2020, including elements of a "straight line" in a large press conference. Then the event lasted 4 hours and 29 minutes, during which time Putin answered 68 questions from both journalists and ordinary Russians.
In 2020, due to the pandemic, Putin contacted journalists via videoconference from his residence in Novo-Ogarev, only a few correspondents of the Kremlin pool were sitting next to him at that time, and the rest of the journalists were at the World Trade Center. Putin's last big press conference in 2021 was held in the capital's Manege already in person.
Accreditation for the last press conference was closed, only representatives of those media who received an invitation from the presidential administration could get to it. Among them were both federal and regional mass media, as well as representatives of the foreign press, and foreign media were invited. Explaining then the principles and criteria for the formation of the list of accredited media, Peskov said: "These are journalists and mass media who take an active part in covering political, economic events and the presidential agenda."
Due to restrictions in 2021, the total number of accredited media representatives decreased significantly - just over five hundred people compared to 774 in 2020 and about 1900 in the pre-pandemic 2019. The 2021 press conference lasted 3 hours and 55 minutes, during which the president answered 55 questions.
Putin has been holding large annual press conferences since 2001. They almost always take place on one of the Thursdays of December. The exception was 2016, when the president's press conference was postponed to Friday by his personal decision. Putin considered it impossible to hold a meeting with journalists on the day of the funeral of Ambassador Andrei Karlov, who died in Turkey.
The duration of Putin's press conference is always unpredictable, the record of the president's communication with journalists was set in 2008. Then, in 4 hours and 40 minutes, Putin answered more than 100 questions.