Thursday, July 29, 2021

Russian media overseers put pressure on Google after protests in Moscow


Zubair Yaqoob
The author has diversified experience in investigative journalism. He is Chief content editor at
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After the protests and mass arrests in Moscow, the Russian media overseers have asked internet giant Google to ban advertising of unauthorized protests on its Youtube platform. In a letter, the company is called upon to take action against the commercial display of unauthorized protests. This was announced by the media regulatory authority Roskomnadzor on Sunday.

Specifically, the agency complains that government opponents can use the Youtube channels to spread push messages about demonstrations. Last weekend, live videos of the protests were shown and distributed. Andrej Klimov from the Russian Federation Council complained about this on Saturday. People would be manipulated with these videos, he said, according to Russian media reports. “They received information from sources that they had never subscribed to without reason.

On Youtube many videos have been published that show the tough crackdown of the police on arrests. During the past three weekends, more than 2,000 people have been arrested during the protests in Moscow.


There are also videos on Youtube from the demonstration last Saturday, to which, according to organizers, more than 50,000 people participated, The rally had been approved by the authorities, in contrast to the weekend protests. Roskomnadzor threatened Google, should a reaction fail, Moscow will regard this as a hostile interference in country’s internal affairs and in democratic elections. Then the complainant reserve the right to respond “appropriately” to it. A Google spokesman in Russia declined to comment.

For the Russian opposition, the social network has a great importance, unlike television and radio it can not be so heavily controlled by the Kremlin. That’s why some government critics operated their own channel on Youtube. The opposition politician Alexei Navalny, who reported several times on revelations about corruption in the environment of President Vladimir Putin.

Previously, Russian government had cracked down on Facebook and Twitter because the two American corporations did not store their users’ data on Russian servers as specified. As early as April of last year, the Russian secret service FSB blocked the Messenger service Telegram after its founder, Pavel Durov, refused to send the messages no longer encrypted.

Read also: Russian police arrests 70 people in opposition protests

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