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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 from April, 2015

29 April 2015

What Has Happened to Russia's Best Independent Radio Station?

It's still one of the few outlets where you’ll find independent reporting and analysis, but Echo of Moscow has become Russia’s liberal radio station that Russian liberals love to hate.

Chernobyl Is Burning, But Who's to Blame?

As first responders fought the wildfire near the Chernobyl exclusion zone in Ukraine, panic and the conspiracy theories bloomed fast on social networks.

28 April 2015

Ukraine's Security Service Takes Down 30,000 Websites to Fight ‘Pro-Russian Propaganda’

In an attempt to shut down a handful of pro-Russian websites, Ukraine's Security Service seized servers from one of the country's largest hosting providers, taking down thousands of innocent websites.

27 April 2015

The Curious Chronology of Russian Twitter Bots

Multiple Twitter accounts were created on the same day, sometimes within hours of each other. This trend, typical for automated bot networks, was evident throughout Alexander's pro-Kremlin bot sample.

24 April 2015

A Response to the Kremlin-Bot Skeptics

After Alexander's bot network analysis garnered massive attention from Russian media and social networks, he now addresses some of the skepticism about the bot networks and their provenance.

23 April 2015

‘Anonymous International’ Wants You to Think the Kremlin Can Hide Nothing

'Anonymous International' continues to leak confidential government correspondence in Russia, while the group's methods and motivations remain shrouded in mystery.

20 April 2015

The ‘Beauty’ of Russian Homophobia

Titled "Beautiful People and What They Say to Me," LGBT rights activist Lena Klimova posted photos of individuals in their everyday lives, and the threatening messages they’ve sent her online.

Russian Siberia, Five Years Later: Still Neglected, Still Burning

RuNet Echo looks at Russian Internet users' responses to the 2010 and 2015 wildfires, comparing what's stayed the same and what's changed.

16 April 2015

There’s Already a Rap Song Dedicated to Russia’s Twerking Bee-Costumed Teens

Young people in Orenburg are changing their profile pictures on VKontakte, Russia’s most popular social network, to a banner that reads, “We don’t want to fight, we want to dance.”

13 April 2015

Google Denies Russian Media Claims on Data Localization Move

Global Voices Advocacy

Google representatives have denied Russian media reports that Google was bowing to Russia's demands and moving to store Russian users' data on servers inside the country, calling them "inaccurate."

Tsarist Russia Bans Internet Porn

A Russian court in Tatarstan has banned 136 porn sites, and the language of its ruling implies that all Internet porn is hereby against the law.

10 April 2015

Are Google and eBay Bowing to the Kremlin's Data Localization Demands?

Global Voices Advocacy

Google and eBay may be caving to Russia's data localization law, a move that would leave users even more vulnerable to state surveillance than they are today.

The Kremlin Declares War on Memes

By saying it is illegal to add celebrities’ images to certain memes, the Kremlin could be opening the door to banning a whole genre of absurdist online humor.

7 April 2015

Sixty Million Russians Go Online Daily, New Report Shows

Russia now boasts higher Internet penetration than any other BRICS or CIS country, with over 60 percent of Russian adults regularly using the web.

Who the Hell Keeps Leaking Kremlin Correspondence?

Russia's mysterious data-leaking group Anonymous International strikes again, releasing thousands of private messages allegedly belonging to the official who helped shape the Putin Administration's domestic policy from 2012 to 2014.

5 April 2015

Anton Nossik in ‘Open Russia’ on the History of Kremlin Botnets

We translated Open Russia's interview with Anton Nossik about the significance of Russian bot networks and their legacy in the modern history of Kremlin politics.

2 April 2015

Social Network Analysis Reveals Full Scale of Kremlin's Twitter Bot Campaign

Visualised data on nearly 20,500 pro-Kremlin Twitter "bot" accounts reveals the massive scale of information manipulation attempts on the RuNet.

Your Russian History Professor Is Basically James Bond

As scholars debated the ethics of writing about their troubles in Russian archives, yet another British graduate student working in Nizhny Novgorod was ordered to leave the country.

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