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Essay Example on Russia Internet Censorship

4 pages
909 words
Harvey Mudd College
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This censorship research will be talking about Russia Internet Censorship; how they operate over there and how they have basic of several laws and mechanisms like Hierarchy, Constitution, Amendments, 20th Anniversary, Statutes, and so on. To begin with, in 2012 Russia had a single register known as centralized internet blacklist. This would be controlled by the Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, known as Roskmnadzor. Roskmnadzor is basically a combination of other organizations such as Federal Consumer Protection Service, the renowned Federal Drug Control Service, and the Prosecutor general. All these have the ability to block the Internet without the court order.

Usually, this calls for unsanctioned public actions and copyrights. Therefore, other than juvenile victims, child abuse content or material that encourages the abuse of the drugs and explanations of suicide; any other information can automatically be obstructed using a court order. The record is also utilized for censorship for the individual, most domain names, various URLs and random IP address and was initially initiated to block sites used for selling drugs, content meant to help people in committing suicide, as well as child pornography. An amendment was then incorporated to block data that is grouped as extremist, for example; call for illegal discussions, and any other material considered illegal.

The directives in Russia regarding Internet censorship have been frequently met with criticism of the Federal government and local administration because it has been termed as abuse of mass media freedom. In addition, the process has resulted in shutting down of several online media outlets (Soldatov and Borogan 14).

Internet service providers; (ISPs) based in Russia have continuously held legal responsibility for any illegal contents that is made public to other users by those who have normally upload and include illegal and inappropriate content on the internet. This is also known as (intermediary liability).

In 2004 only a small percentage of the minorities in Russians (8%) had Internet access. However, by May 2008, this number had significantly increased and about 32.7 million users in Russia could be able to use the Internet. By 2012, 75.9 million people had already gained access to the internet, about 53% of the total residents. The increase in the number of people with internet access reached an all-time high in December 2015, where 92.8 million people, about (70%) of the inhabitants had to access to the internet (Marechal 29)

When he visited Russia, Alvaro Gil-Robles, Human Rights Commissioner in Europe observed an increase in the eminence of reaction pace of Russias internet news and media. Ideally, major newspapers were available online and could be accessed by any person. As this unfolded, some people resorted to the internet as their most preferred source of information outlet. Russias agencies media was included as the most significant Ria-Novosti (Russian Agency of International Information) and Itar-Tass (Telegraph Agency of the Soviet Union) were also properly embodied in the web.

However, later on in 2008, Agence France-Presse observed this, The internet is the freest area of the media in Russia, where almost all television and many newspapers are under formal or unofficial government control. This implies that the Russia government adequately conversant with the important social and political matters today (Marechal 29)

The Presidential Council for Human Rights recently discovered the rise in Russias Internet Censorship corresponding to the report issued by the Russian Society. Users instances of censorship increased from 1 to 5 incidents between 2013and 2014. According to the report, not only was some of the internet sites blocked, but the situation escalated and intensified resulting to police raids and bloggers being beaten up whenever they were found using the internet.

Today, in Russia, the government has banned all websites and software that are interconnected with evading Internet filtering, for instance, the virtual private network software (VPN). Other means meant to access and circumvent government website were also blocked, an amendment that was passed in 2017.

The Russian system of Operational-Investigatory measures came up with new techniques to monitor all the activities going on within the internet. The achieved this by ensuring that all telecommunications users adopt hardware specifically supplied and produced by the Federal Security Service. By doing this the monitoring agencies would be able to monitor all data and content passing through the system. This would include browsing activity, emails and phone calls (Paul 13)

This kind of information could be monitored without the need for a warrant. Later in 2012, the restrictions were further increased and monitoring was extended to social media platforms. With these new regulations, the communications ministry ordered all operational companies to install Deep Packets Inspection (DPI) a system that would allow even better monitoring by the agencies.


In conclusion, the move by the Russian government to censor the internet was a bold move that greatly helped to avert the crimes that were being carried out via the internet. Form selling of drugs to child pornography and other inappropriate content, this move would see such activities banned and whoever was found guilty would be prosecuted. In as much as internet censorship in Russia has denied people of their privacy while using the internet, it has promotes peace and largely reduced illegal activities meant to disrupt peace and destroy the culture of the Russian people.


Work cited

Marechal, Nathalie. "Networked Authoritarianism and the Geopolitics of Information: Understanding Russian Internet Policy". Media and Communication. 5 (1), 2017: 29.

Paul, Goble. "FSB Increasingly Involved in Misuse of 'Anti-Extremism' Laws, SOVA Says". The Interpreter Magazine. 29th March 2015: 13.

Soldatov, Andrei., and Borogan, Irina. "Putin brings China's Great Firewall to Russia in cybersecurity pact". The Guardian. 29th November 2016: 14.


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