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· May, 2015

Stories about Eastern & Central Europe from May, 2015

29 May 2015

Hungary Lays the Xenophobia on Thick in National Questionnaire About Immigration

The questionnaire seems to be more of a tool to influence public opinion than to weigh it. Civil society organizations are speaking out against the government's rhetoric.

28 May 2015

Did Russia Just Effectively Outlaw Internet Anonymizers?

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

A Russian court has ruled to block a webpage for being "an anonymizer," raising concerns that tools like Tor and other anonymizing proxy services might soon be banned wholesale.

26 May 2015

Ukrainian and Russian Users Petition Facebook to ‘Stop Political Blocking’

RuNet Echo

Ukrainians and Russians are petitioning Facebook on the Change.org website to protest what they insist is an ongoing issue: unwarranted and biased blocking of Ukrainian and Russian Facebook profiles.

Dying in Secret: The Ethics of Investigating Russia's Ukraine Casualties

RuNet Echo

A new type of investigative journalism by bloggers is blurring the lines between armchair Internet sleuthing and hard-hitting investigative reporting to uncover information about Russia's role in the Ukraine conflict.

23 May 2015

Dear Ukrainian Officials: Russian Security Services Thank You for Your Cooperation!

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

A group of journalists pulled a prank on Ukrainian officials who use Russian email services, alerting them to the dangers of careless information security policies.

19 May 2015

Russia Launches ‘Predictive System’ for Monitoring Protest Activity Online

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

The new Russian software will allegedly be able to spot preparations for protests online long before they happen, and could supply that information to law enforcement, academics and state officials.

The Profitable Patriotism of Vladimir Putin's Biker Bromance

RuNet Echo

Putin’s biker bromance admittedly isn’t radically new, but the prominence—both in Russia and abroad—of the "Night Wolves" motorcycle gang is exploding like never before.

18 May 2015

‘Lipstick Protester’ Jasmina Golubovska: Macedonians Want to ‘Start from Scratch’

A Reuters photo turned Golubovska's lipstick into a symbol of the mass protests in Macedonia. But there is nothing cosmetic about citizens' demand for change.

16 May 2015

Mr. Bureaucrat, Russia's ‘Wrinkled’ Young Women Would Like a Word

RuNet Echo

In response to a sexist outburst by a ranking government official, young women have started posting selfies with the hashtag #WrinkledWoman while scrunching up their faces to lampoon the remark.

15 May 2015

PayPal Blocks Donations for Printing Boris Nemtsov’s Ukraine War Report

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

PayPal has informed the "Putin.War" report team the service cannot be used for "collecting funds to finance the activities of political parties or for political aims in Russia.”

Facebook's Zuckerberg Responds to Ukrainians’ Complaints, But Is His Answer Enough?

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

Mark Zuckerberg has addressed the appeals of Ukrainian Facebook users for better content moderation and calls to create a dedicated Ukrainian office. His answers seem unlikely to satisfy them.

13 May 2015

How the Internet Both Facilitates and Challenges Rape in Russia

RuNet Echo

The explosion of online social networks makes it easier than ever for sexual predators, but the Internet also presents women with new weapons against a legal system stacked against them.

12 May 2015

Fed Up With ‘Political’ Blocking, Russia and Ukraine Appeal to Facebook

RuNet Echo

Ukrainians and Russians are unhappy about Facebook allowing "politically motivated" takedowns of posts they say are being reported for violations by masses of "Kremlin supporters."

9 May 2015

Russia's Indefatigable Absurdists

RuNet Echo

Every year on May 1, thousands of Russians stage a public celebration of absurdity in a handful of cities across Siberia called "Monstration."

8 May 2015

Leaked Emails Reveal What Vladimir Putin Tells World Leaders at Private Meals

RuNet Echo

The leaked emails can be sorted into three types of reports: menu options for meetings, summaries of the catering services, and—most interestingly—outlines of Putin's conversations with his guests.

Ukraine Is Banning ‘Communist Symbols’ and the Kremlin Is Peeved

RuNet Echo

Ukraine has moved to restrict the use of Communist and Nazi symbols in a bid to part with the country's Soviet past. Not everyone is happy.

7 May 2015

Did a Journalist Save a Chechen Teenager from Marrying a 57-Year-Old Police Captain? No.

RuNet Echo

Last week, we reported that a journalist had succeeded in preventing a Chechen teenager from being married against her will. It now appears the marriage will go through, after all.

Macedonian Women Form Human Shield Around Police to Keep Protests Peaceful

The women were participating in a second day of protests demanding justice after leaked recordings seemed to show officials tried to cover up a 2011 murder by a police officer.

6 May 2015

Macedonian Police Unleash Water Cannons and Batons on Anti-Government Protesters

Authorities brutally cracked down on people protesting the government's alleged attempts to cover up the murder of a man at the hands of a police officer.

How Twerking May Destroy a Russian Small Business

RuNet Echo

A Russian cosmetics company is using a scandalous dance in its marketing, and a Russian politician says the ad commits a “depraved act” against minors.

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