Stories about Russia

Russia's isolationist ‘sovereign internet’ bill worries experts and users alike

Experts have pointed to the colossal costs associated with building the infrastructure required, and lamented that this would only lead to further monopolization of the Russian internet provider market.

Censored in 2018: Protest videos, court verdicts, real news — and Peppa Pig

From blocked websites to revoked media licenses to account shutdowns, censorship comes in many forms. Here are a few we saw in 2018.

Russian reporter who faked his own murder named a ‘person of the year’ by TIME magazine

TIME ignored the murder of three journalists while including a staged one. Why couldn’t both be included?

Macedonia's former ruling party organized a trolling apparatus for spreading hate speech, threats

A former Macedonian government official revealed that the former ruling party created and is still actively running online "troll farms".

Six red carnations and one severed ram’s head: Deadly threats sent to Russian independent newspaper

The recipient of these grisly messages, the independent investigative newspaper Novaya Gazeta, holds the record for the most of its reporters murdered on the job: six, including Anna Politkovskaya.

Chat bot lets Russians detained at protests request legal assistance

A Russian NGO tracking police brutality developed a chatbot on the popular Telegram messenger that allows people detained at rallies report their arrests and request legal assistance.

Google caves in to Russian demands, censors videos promoting a protest rally

This latest scandal is unfolding as Google is in the middle of an existential crisis, with its employees revolting against what they see as embracing censorship by their company.

Is Russian social media giant VKontakte sidestepping the GDPR? One user is trying to find out.

Russia's largest social network VKontakte is in hot water again for playing fast and loose with their users' privacy — this time allegedly violating the GDPR regulations.

Russian social media giant evades hard questions about privacy failures

One user challenged Vkontakte: "How many times have you challenged the security services in court over their demands to hand over user information? You have that right."

Russians are facing criminal prosecution for sharing memes online, thanks to anti-extremism laws

Repressive laws and cumbersome bureaucracy are putting hundreds of Russians behind bars for sharing memes online.

Netizen Report: Russia and Sudan join the ranks of countries looking to outlaw ‘fake news’

On the heels of recent legislation in Malaysia, Philippines, Brazil and France, the latest draft laws on “fake news” come from Sudan and Russia.

Russian journalist forced to resign for criticizing pro-Putin propaganda on Instagram

"We wish the Earth could live in peace, but if our commander in chief Beckons to fight the final battle, we are with you, Uncle Vova!"

Ukrainian authorities stage journalist's murder, taking ‘fake news’ to the next level

"The lesson here is to distrust reports from Ukraine."

Russian anti-corruption activists are jailed for ‘inciting riots’ based on their tweets and retweets

"...here goes another 'organizing a rally by retweet.' Looks like this time they’re just locking up everyone."

Netizen Report: What do Iran, Pakistan and Russia have in common? They all ban Telegram.

The Advox Netizen Report offers an international snapshot of challenges, victories, and emerging trends in internet rights around the world.

In the fight against pro-Kremlin bots, tech companies are suspending regular users

Tech companies' one-size-fits-all approach to bot-hunting seems to have dragged a number of innocent victims in its nets.

Moscow activists say telcos disrupted mobile coverage during protests, at order of police

Poor or disappearing network coverage during mass protest in Russia is not unprecedented, but now activists are saying the telecom companies are intentionally degrading the service quality on police's orders.

Troll farm takes aim at American audiences in new web campaign

RIA FAN, a Russian news outlet with known connections to the Saint Petersburg "troll factory", announced its latest project: a website called USA Really, aimed at a U.S.-based audience.

Netizen Report: Russia is blocking millions of IP addresses, all because of the Telegram #IPocalypse

The Advox Netizen Report offers an international snapshot of challenges, victories, and emerging trends in Internet rights around the world.

As Russian court announces Telegram ban, users stand defiant, amused… and worried

And as a year-long battle between Telegram and the Russian authorities ended with the decision to block the app, reaction to the announcement has been passionate and often derisive.

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