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Kevin Rothrock · March, 2013

Former RuNet Echo project editor.

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Latest posts by Kevin Rothrock from March, 2013

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As Liberal Russia's Secret Superhero ‘KermlinRussia’ Unmasks, Some See Evil

RuNet Echo  30 March 2013

Arseny Bobrovsky, the owner of a Russian PR firm called “Daily Communications,” would be a thoroughly typical example of Moscow’s “creative class” liberals, were it not for one thing: Bobrovsky has a secret identity. At least he did, anyway, until March 25, 2013, when he and his accomplice Katya Romanovskaya outed themselves to the world as the authors of KermlinRussia, one of the most popular accounts on Russian Twitter.

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How Russian Villagers Can Terrify the Kremlin

RuNet Echo  21 March 2013

The ploy was simple: Andrei Turinov, a town councilman from Novouspenskii, posted to the Internet an open letter addressing Dmitri Medvedev, declaring the exit of 60 United Russia members from the party. The timing was perfect, and for a brief moment one small village in Krasnoyarsk had the attention of the nation's political elite.

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Propaganda & Mystery in Russia's Browder-Magnitsky Case

RuNet Echo  12 March 2013

Conspiracies are the stuff of Russian politics, and the anarchy of online political discourse makes the RuNet an especially exciting place to watch conspiracy theories unfold. Consider Bill Browder and the late Sergei Magnitsky, the two key figures in a multimillion-dollar tax fraud scam. For years, Russian federal investigators and Browder’s firm have traded accusations about who’s to blame for the theft of 230 million dollars.

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How Using Twitter Can End Your Political Campaign in Russia

Earlier this week, a judge in Krasnodar disqualified a politician running for city council, after determining that his campaign materials infringed on copyrights of three popular Internet social networks: Twitter, Facebook, and Vkontakte. What exactly was this man’s crime? He ran a black-and-white newspaper advertisement that included the three websites’ logos.

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Facebook Instigates Another Russian Media Scandal

Earlier today, Yuri Saprykin, announced that Gazeta.ru’s editors have removed Maria Tsybulskaya from the newspaper’s video-interviews project, because her interview with Saprykin included off-limits political questions about the criminal cases surrounding last May’s violent protest at Bolotnaia Square, and Putin’s declining support in national polls.

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Russia's Public Petitions: By the People, But for Whom?

Yesterday, on March 4, Vladimir Putin signed an executive order regarding the creation of a government petitions online platform, which will allow Russian citizens to create and vote on various policy issues at the federal, regional, and local levels. The website, which is scheduled to go live for federal petitions in April 2013 and regional and local issues in November 2013, will be called the “Russian Public Initiative.”

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