Why don't Russians use Facebook?

Russia bans "censorship" of Youtube, Facebook and Twitter

Out of anger over the blocking of the content of Russian state broadcasters, the parliament in Moscow has now banned "censorship" on YouTube, Twitter, Facebook and other networks. On Wednesday, the State Duma passed an amendment to the law in its third and final reading that makes such bans a criminal offense. There is a risk of fines or the blocking of websites or entire portals.

Telecommunications authorities in Moscow had previously complained about discrimination against Russian content on the Internet. So material from the state media Ria Novosti or RT will be blocked, it said.

Twitter, Facebook and Youtube in particular are faced with allegations of censorship. The MP's initiative was seen as a reaction to a blockade of Vladimir Solovyov's broadcast on YouTube, who is criticized as a "lying propagandist" loyal to the Kremlin.

Banned criticism

In Russia, innumerable websites are already blocked, which also spread positions critical of the Kremlin - for example the portals kasparov.ru and grani.ru. In the summer, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) condemned the practice as a violation of freedom of expression and urged Russia to unblock the pages and guarantee access to information.

International organizations such as Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and Reporters Without Borders have long complained about massive and completely arbitrary interference by the Russian state in the right to freedom of expression. Critics fear that the new law against "discrimination" against Russian positions will significantly increase the number of blocked sites.

According to the law, the General Prosecutor's Office in Moscow should decide on the sanctions against social networks and Internet platforms in coordination with the Foreign Ministry. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow had also accused Twitter and Facebook of "censoring" Russian content in the past.


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