Russian Court Bans YouTube Website

Russia joins the company of Turkey, China, Pakistan and Iran, in banning YouTube. After an “extremist” nationalist video appeared on the website, a Russian court ordered YouTube to be blocked within the Khabarovsk region. The Guardian reports:

Russia’s blogosphere reacted with anger today after a regional court banned YouTube because it carried a single video containing “extremist” content.

The court in Komsomolsk-on-Amur in Khabarovsk region in the Russian far east ordered Rosnet, a local internet provider, to block YouTube as well as three online libraries and a website that archives deleted web pages.

The regional ban was made because YouTube hosted Russia For Russians, an ultra-nationalist video which was added to the justice ministry’s federal list of banned extremist materials after a separate court decision in Samara region in November.

The other four sites – Web.archives.org, Lib.rus.ec, Thelib.ru and Zhurnal.ru – all carried copies of Hitler’s Mein Kampf.

Anton Nosik, Russia’s leading internet guru, condemned the decision. “The level of crassness in this court ruling is typical of legal proceedings concerning the internet in Russia,” he said. Google, the owner of YouTube, said the ruling violated Russians’ constitutional right to freedom of information.

Many bloggers also decried the ban, warning it could be a slippery slope to tighter censorship across the country.

“I can imagine it now,” wrote Ghost82 on LiveJournal. “Russia in 2015, YouTube is banned everywhere. In search of a gulp of air, people travel to the border with Georgia where they will sit with their laptops and pay unimaginable sums to connect to the internet via powerful Wi-Fi transmitters for a taste of depraved western civilisation.”

Alexander tweeted on RuTvit: “YouTube has been given to understand that Russia, Pakistan and North Korea have much in common.”

An engineer with Rosnet said the company had suggested prosecutors should contact the portals concerned directly to request they take down the offensive material, rather than issuing a blanket ban. “They [prosecutors] remained deaf to these pleas,” he told the Gazeta.ru news website. Rosnet is appealing the ruling.

Story continues at The Guardian

, , , , , ,

  • Haystack

    Banning major social media sites is a great way to establish your country as a totalitarian, cultural backwater in the eyes of the world–right up there with stoning women for witchcraft.

    • Yalor

      Russia has become USSR Lite under Putin.

      • Hadrian999

        when was russia any other way?

        • Yalor

          I guess I had hope that after the failure of the 1991 coup attempt, with Russia under Yeltsin, that things were looking better. That Russia was changing, but maybe I expected too much. It wasn't until Putin that I heard talk of the KGB again.

  • Yalor

    I guess I had hope that after the failure of the 1991 coup attempt, with Russia under Yeltsin, that things were looking better. That Russia was changing, but maybe I expected too much. It wasn’t until Putin that I heard talk of the KGB again.

21
More in banning, Censorship, Khabarovsk, Russia, russia for russians, video sites
Can The Kindle Bypass Chinese Government Censorship?

Here's some fun "real-life favorite stories" from Kindle users. (My favorite one was the 5-year-old's "iPad" comment.) But one Kindle user also reports on a startling development from her recent...

Close