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· August, 2015

Stories about Eastern & Central Europe from August, 2015

This Ukrainian Artist Is Drawing Comics About His Imprisonment By Pro-Russian Militants in Donetsk

A Ukrainian guerrilla artist whose street art got him kidnapped and tortured by pro-Russian militants is working on a comic book to raise awareness of prisoners in occupied eastern Ukraine.

An Indigenous Reindeer Herder Takes on Oil Giants in Siberia

Sergey Kechimov faces two years in prison, accused of threatening to kill two oil workers. He is one of the last Khanty people living near the 'sacred' Imlor Lake.

This Is What Happened When a Ukrainian Film Director Was Sentenced to 20 Years in a Russian Prison

When Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov was sentenced to 20 years in a high-security Russian prison on terrorism charges, Russian and Ukrainian Internet users were less than pleased.

Think You're So Clever, Wikipedia? Russian Censors Are Blocking You Anyway

Though Wikipedia has tried to circumvent Russian censors' demands to remove content, the Kremlin seems intent on blocking the website at all costs.

Did Russia's Biggest Search Engine Censor Itself to Protect Putin's Spokesman?

Vladimir Putin's spokesman is back in the news, after Internet users discovered this weekend that Yandex, the country’s most popular search engine, might be censoring itself to protect him.

Did Wikipedia Just Outsmart Russia's Internet Blacklist?

Wikipedia is trying something new in the fight against Russian censorship, and it might actually work.

That's the Last Time This Cafe Owner Messes with a Supermodel's Autistic Sister

What happened when a cafe owner tried to eject from his business a 27-year-old customer named Oksana, diagnosed with autism and cerebral palsy, saying she was scaring away customers?

How One News Website Is Taking On Russia's Attorney General (and Losing)

How one small oppositionist news website has gobbled up almost half the Russian Attorney General's online censorship efforts.

Russia Blocks Euronews ISIS Video Over ‘Extremist’ User Comment

Russian censors have blocked another YouTube video, although it did not violate any Russian laws. Instead, an offending user comment under the video caused Roscomnadzor to ban the page wholesale.

The Bold and the Uniformed: How New Ukrainian Police Are Taking Over Social Media

Ukrainian capital Kyiv has recently revamped its police force in an attempt to improve law enforcement's reputation, and the fresh new officers are taking social media by storm.

Russian Censors Falsify Evidence Against Newspaper to Uphold Ban on Political Coverage

Last weekend, in an appeals case by one newspaper against the government, state censors finally revealed specifically why they banned several news stories last year about a protest in Siberia.

Serbian State Utility Company to Spend 350,000 Euros on Logo Redesign

Serbian social media users are curious: "Does this logo vacuum clean and bear children or what?"

Croatians React to Alleged ISIS Beheading of Tomislav Salopek

Social media users in Croatia, Egypt, and worldwide react to the alleged beheading of a Croatian expat in Egypt by ISIS.

HRW Research Finds Media Freedom in Western Balkans Under Serious Threat

Eat Your Heart Out, Boston Tea Party. This Is How Russia Destroys Food.

RuNet Echo collects some of the most poignant jokes and statements from Russian-language Twitter about Russia's new war on banned Western food imports.

Pro-Russian Web Network Digs Up the Dirt on Kremlin Critics

Some of the sites in the pro-Kremlin network aim to attack Ukrainian politicians and Russian opposition figures by way of "personal dossiers" and alleged "dirt" dug up on the individuals.

Serbian Intelligence Agency Caught Inquiring to Purchase Surveillance Software

Why Are Japanese Airsoft Fans Cosplaying the Ukrainian Military?

Japan and Ukraine are miles apart. Why are Japanese airsoft players dressing as Ukrainian military and modeling their game scenarios after anti-terrorist operations in eastern Ukraine?

Russia's Democratic Coalition Is On The Ropes

The Democratic Coalition has recently been barred from various regional elections this September, as its grand ambitions have collided full force with the harsh reality of politics in Putin's Russia.

Russia Hacks the Military Again (Its Own)

Russian hackers Anonymous International are shaming the country's Defense Ministry for poor information security practices by leaking sensitive documents that were allegedly sent via free email services.

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