Russia Uses New Internet Censorship Bill To Silence Prominent Reporters Who Criticized The Government

from the for-the-children! dept

Last summer, Russia passed an internet blacklist bill which required ISPs to censor certain sites. At the time, of course, Russian officials insisted it would be used to "protect the children" from "harmful information," including child porn, suicide instructions, and pro-drug propaganda. They insisted it would not go beyond that. Of course, within weeks, a popular blogging site, LiveJournal, was censored, followed by the Russian equivalent of Wikipedia.

And now they're targeting journalists as well. Access is reporting that added to the blacklist has been a site used by prominent free speech / civil liberties reporters in Russia who have been critical of the government. The government claims (of course) that they put the site on the blacklist due to "child pornography elements," but Access points out that rather than just removing such content, they've blocked access to the entire site, which is notable given the usage by critical reporters.
At least two prominent journalists host their blogs on LJRossia.org: Andrei Malgin, a journalist who has been very critical of the government and hosts a mirror site at LJR, and Vladimir Pribylovsky, who has been targeted for publishing a large database of government misdeeds and for disclosing official documents that expose corruption.
Once you've set up tools that enable censorship, you know they'll eventually be used for censorship.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 3:55am

    democracy has become a dirty word and more so-called democratic countries are following the same path as Russia and other similar-minded countries. the reason is obvious. governments are doing whatever they can to stifle criticism. they are doing whatever they can to remove what freedom and privacy people have left. they are doing whatever they can to obtain and maintain complete surveillance on the ordinary people (the rich, the famous and the powerful are, of course, exempt!). they are doing whatever they can to stop people in one country from communicating with those in another country, particularly when there are conflicts happening. yet all these 'democratic countries' condemn Russia, China, N.Korea etc, whilst doing the exact same thing, ruling with as iron a grip as they can get away with!!

     

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  2.  
    icon
    Shadow Dragon (profile), Feb 14th, 2013 @ 4:02am

    Thin Skin Government

    Oh I find out pathetic.

     

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  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 4:37am

    Re:

    They just want to go back to the good old days.
    btw, are/were there any real democracies?

     

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  4.  
    icon
    vegetaman (profile), Feb 14th, 2013 @ 4:45am

    Leaders change but the oppression remains the same.

     

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  5.  
    icon
    Ninja (profile), Feb 14th, 2013 @ 5:01am

    And our usual critics keep being intellectually dishonest and yelling that no system will ever be abused by the Governments. Riiiight.

     

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  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 5:22am

    Re:

    Child porn has been censored in the US for years. We've managed to not censor wikipedia.

    Article is nothing but FUD. As usual.

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 5:31am

    Don't tell me! I know this one! They placated the people into accepting censorship to stop child pornography. Right?

     

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  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 5:40am

    Re: Re:

    If only you applied half the criticism towards the government and your copyright overlords that you do towards Techdirt...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 5:47am

    Re:

    As the leaders are childish when it comes to dealing with criticism,it cause involuntary reddening of the face, therefore it should be banned as pornography.

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 7:18am

    Re: Re:

    The US censors lots stuff that not child porn, and not just in the United States as you seem to think, but worldwide via root DNS abuse. Look up Moo.com and Dajaz1.

     

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  11.  
    icon
    Valkor (profile), Feb 14th, 2013 @ 8:04am

    Re: Re:

    Depends on your definition of "real". Athens was the most directly democratic, but was limited to certain males. Direct democracy really breaks down for a lot of reasons in large groups. Representative democracy works better when small groups of people elect representatives than when large groups do.

     

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  12.  
    icon
    Ninja (profile), Feb 14th, 2013 @ 8:08am

    Re: Re:

    It's illegal. It's very, very different from being censored. I'm not sure of what was seen in that platform but regardless shutting the entire site down because one or two users uploaded is akin to shutting down a road because one or two drivers have been caught trafficking drugs.

    You seem to be confused about intentional and accidental censoring. For instance Dajaz1 was censored accidentally (and the US failed to fix it when it was thrown in their face). Regardless of what kind of censorship goes on the simple fact that the tools can cause censorship should serve as deterrent to putting such tools in place.

    Also, Wikipedia is not a good example here ;)

     

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  13.  
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    RyanNerd (profile), Feb 14th, 2013 @ 8:42am

    Not suprising

    In Soviet Russia the Internet surfs you.

     

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  14.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Feb 14th, 2013 @ 10:05am

    Re: Re:

    Child porn has been censored in the US for years. We've managed to not censor wikipedia.


    Very, very different. The content is illegal and the government can go after and shut down the actual content. They cannot and do not have a blacklist blocking access. In fact, when they tried that, it lost in court.

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 2:04pm

    So, basically, the Russian government can shut down any website it wants to by claiming it contains child pornography. Posting of actual pornography by government agents to cement the claim completely optional.

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    Anonymous, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 2:23pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "For instance, Dajaz1 was censored accidentally". Uh-huh. Do you really believe that?!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    Anonymous, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 2:28pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Child porn has been censored in the US for years". I wonder what part of "Congress shall make no law...abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press" the government doesn't understand. But then, when has the constitution stopped the government from doing ANYTHING?

     

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  18.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 14th, 2013 @ 7:12pm

    really, they normally just shoot them.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 15th, 2013 @ 7:57am

    it isn't censorship, thier idea of free speech isn't your idea

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 15th, 2013 @ 7:58am

    Re:

    The US isn't a "Democratic" country, it is a "Constitutional Replublic"

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 15th, 2013 @ 5:09pm

    Russia always comes across as a bit of a basket case.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    zeenarg, Mar 27th, 2013 @ 4:16am

    ...

    We don't have democracies and didn't. Our goverment just make see that Russia is good.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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