Intel Turns Off Russian Forums, Blogs & Comments In Response To Russian Blogging Law

from the silence-all-of-you dept

Back in April of last year, we were among the first to report on a very dangerous new law in Russia targeting bloggers, requiring any blogger or social media user with more than 3,000 “visitors” a day to register their real name with the government. The idea, obviously, is to put a massive chill on free speech among popular bloggers and social media users — making it clear that the government is tracking everything they do. Just recently we noted how various social media platforms were responding to Russian demands that they censor or take down accounts related to opposition politician Alexei Navalny, or other critics of the government.

But the blogger/social media law has now gone into effect, and it’s having an impact in all sorts of places. For example, chip giant Intel has now announced that it is basically turning off all ways to contribute to its Russian Intel Developer Zone in order to comply with the law.

In order to be compiant with the Russian Internet Bloggers Law the following changes will be implemented to Russian Intel® Developer Zone community as of January 1st 2015:

  • Blog post contributions will be disabled
  • Forum contributions will be disabled
  • All commenting will be turned off for russian content

While it’s unlikely that those in power in Russia today think this is a very big deal, recognize that taking Russians out of forums and discussions concerning key technological developments could certainly come back to haunt Russian technology development. This also comes about a month after Google closed down its Russian engineering office, in response to a different regulatory shift: a “data handling law” that would require all information from Russian users be kept in Russia (making it more easily accessible by Russian officials and the intelligence community).

All of these moves may be designed to shore up the existing leadership’s political power, but it seems like a fairly short-term strategy, given that the end result is likely to hold back technological expertise and talent at a time when staying on top of technology is so important.

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Companies: intel

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Comments on “Intel Turns Off Russian Forums, Blogs & Comments In Response To Russian Blogging Law”

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27 Comments
ethorad (profile) says:

a “data handling law” that would require all information from Russian users be kept in Russia (making it more easily accessible by Russian officials and the intelligence community)

Sounds like the sort of laws everyone wants to introduce in the post-Snowden world. Not so much easier for local government access but a chance at making it harder for US government to access.

John Halo (profile) says:

Russians are about as bright as Democrats. They make ridiculous rules and just assume they will be blindly followed. If they could think two moves ahead they, same as Democrats, would see how they are shooting themselves in the foot. But with as little difference as there is between Democrats and Putin’s Russia I should expect the same lack of foresight from both of them.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

United Russia (Putin’s party) isn’t all of Russia…I find it funny people consider Russia this monolithic country where everyone’s the same and there is only one party…the latter died on the last day of 1991.

There’s 4 parties in Russia, one even more to the right than Putin’s. Then Liberal-Democrats in the centre-left and Communists to the full left. Putin’s party controls about 60% of the country by representatives. He does like any leader in a majority government that doesn’t work like a republic (US, France). In Canada we suffer under the omnibus bills from Harper since he got majority in 2011, which contain who knows what, he doesn’t allow much debate at all because he can do so. We suddenly discover what they passed as time goes by.

I won’t even have a fucking mailman deliver stuff to my door this fall, even if there’s elections in October which could kick him out. I’ll have to use gas to get to the “community mailboxes” they are putting inside cities now, not just for people living in the middle of nowhere.

Sorry bout the off topic, but that’s just an example of laws that are passed with discussion because majority, making Harper a defacto dictator for anything federally related (thank god Provinces have more rights/responsabilities than American States).

Anonymous Coward says:

I generally am not one of those crazy russophobes and do not use invented quotes by Putin and often find him more reasonable than NATO who really seemed to want his country as an enemy again. But this law is dumb, I don’t know how laws are brought to the table in the Russian Duma, but Putin’s party represents about 60% of it, so I imagine if not behind the idea, someone from his party is. And they’re shooting themselves in the foot. Unless they really want to spring up Russian-based multinationals, which is gonna be more difficult now than it would have been just 3 years ago.

Sheogorath (profile) says:

Not doing enough

In order to be compiant with the Russian Internet Bloggers Law the following changes will be implemented to Russian Intel® Developer Zone community as of January 1st 2015:
Blog post contributions will be disabled
Forum contributions will be disabled
All commenting will be turned off for Russian content

The new law relates to visitors, not contributors. In order to not register their name and still be compliant with the law, Intel needs to shut down its Russian blogs and forums altogether.

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