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RuNet Echo is a project of Global Voices to expand and deepen understanding of the Russian language Internet (RuNet) and related online communities. Read more »

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Stories from RuNet Echo

13 May 2019

Pussy Riot's Maria Alyokhina: ‘Even in Russia, social media is still an effective method for uniting people’

Masha Alyokhina talks art, activism, and feminism in Russia -- and why a new cold war is coming.

15 April 2019

Russian state media scolds independent outlets for ‘neutral’ word choice in counter-terror operation reports

RT’s Russian-language website attacked other media outlets for using the word “killed” instead of “liquidated” or “neutralized.”

10 April 2019

Rumors of Russia's first ‘fake news’ case against a media outlet might just be fake news

Advox

Media were quick to suggest that a bogus yoga ban story could be the first victim of the Russia's 'fake news' law.

8 April 2019

Moscow human rights activists sue a Russian far eastern republic over ban on migrant workers

Human rights activists will have to fight Yasen Nikolayev’s act on purely legalistic grounds, arguing that regulating the local labor market in Yakutia is not actually required.

1 April 2019

Russians rejoice as their favorite Ukrainian presidential hopeful, a comedian with no political experience, wins first round

Ukraine’s presidential elections attracted intense attention from neighboring Russia, with state television channels -- usually extremely hostile to post-Maidan Ukraine -- attempting to paint a picture of chaos and disarray.

29 March 2019

Russian regulators ask VPNs to block blacklisted websites, but most have refused

Advox

This defeats the purpose of a VPN, a technology used primarily to help people access censored websites.

19 March 2019

Russian journalist forced to resign for Telegram channel critical of St. Petersburg authorities

Advox

Journalist Maria Karpenko says her editor confronted her about co-running a Telegram channel critical of St. Petersburg authorities.

18 March 2019

‘Blood feud’ against Chechen blogger is the culmination of a months-long, unusually frank conversation about a buried past

Heated exchanges provide a rare glimpse into painful and conflicted issues that are burning hot in today’s Chechnya, ten years after the official conclusion of the Second Chechen War.

15 March 2019

Teen theatre production banned by Russian authorities for promoting ‘non-traditional family relations’

Advox

Russia has recently passed a series of socially conservative laws targeting activists, advocacy groups and online media for anything that can be construed as "promoting homosexuality to minors."

8 March 2019

Russia sends an official implicated in a sexual harassment scandal to the 2019 UN Commission on the Status of Women

Leonid Slutsky’s appointment as the head of a national delegation to a global forum on the status of women can only be regarded as an act of cruel trolling.

7 March 2019

Russia’s latest ‘anti-fake news law’ is so bad even Kremlin pranksters hate it

Advox

Provisions of the new law make it clear that its real target are the online news outlets still not fully controlled by the state or its subsidiaries.

Queer women in Russia’s North Caucasus ‘face sexual violence, forced marriage, and murder’

Out of the 21 women interviewed by QWNC, eight knew someone among their friends, relatives, or neighbours killed by their male family members for behaviour that "humiliated the family."

3 March 2019

Russian rocket Soyuz launches the first OneWeb satellites, tethered to the ground by restrictive legislation

Russians' hopes for censorship-free online access crashed and burned after the authorities imposed strict regulations and full government control of the pioneering satellite Internet program.

27 February 2019

USCYBERCOM attack gives Russian legislators new justification for tighter internet controls

Advox

Both pro-Kremlin experts and their opponents see the USCYBERCOM's attack on the "troll factory" as ammunition for isolationist policies.

26 February 2019

Russian cathedral choir's performance of a song about US nuclear annihilation shows that parody doesn't quite work in 2019

As Russian state TV regularly airs segments simulating total or partial nuclear destruction of the United States, this was bound to raise a few eyebrows.

22 February 2019

As Putin preaches ‘sovereignty’ and tech modernization, experts lament loss of online freedoms

Advox

As Vladimir Putin promises Russians a faster, more reliable internet, two reports by independent expert groups paint an unrelentingly bleak picture of more crackdowns on online freedom of speech.

17 February 2019

Russian public sector workers ordered to ‘like’ social media posts promoting the 2019 Winter Universiade

This is not the first instance of Russian public officials acting as "human bots" to promote the government's agenda online.

3 February 2019

Russian ‘anti-fake news’ bill rushed through parliament despite vocal opposition

Advox

Both the "anti-fake news" bill and its twin initiative against offending the authorities use Germany and other Western countries' laws as inspiration.

26 January 2019

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.

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