Internet expert: “Roskomnadsor is a toothless Tiger”

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After the mass protests in Moscow, the Russian media demanded a Supervisory authority, Google should delete Videos from non-approved Demos on Youtube. Pure Routine, says Internet expert Anton Merkulov in the DW-interview.

DW: The allegation that Google is the Videos in the national Affairs of Russia interfered, and advertising for non-permitted demonstrations made. The is entitled?

Anton Merkulov: no, of course not. For Russia, it is simply unpleasant, that through platforms like Youtube, anyone could see how the police dealt with the protesters. Instead of looking at your own mistakes, it is obvious, then the Internet or Youtube spent for non-approved protests or follow-up actions responsible.

Could it be that Google fails to comply with the demands of the media Supervisory authority Roskomnadsor in any Form, so some of the Videos deletes?

The Russian Blogger and journalist Anton Merkulov

No one really expected that that will happen. It is now the task of Roskomnadsor to regulate the Internet to block websites, and so on, and therefore, it is Routine to make such claims. But Google is not getting into a Deal, and users uploaded protest videos to delete, just because Russia would like it to be. Russia is already not a very big market for Google.

Roskomnadsor has, however, announced that Russia was ready to consider it as a “hostile interference in internal Affairs and democratic elections”, if Google does nothing. You reserve the right “to respond appropriately”.

Russia will not dare to block Youtube, that would be a big Outcry. Apart from this, a country would be to implement wide lockdown is also technically very difficult. This also shows the example of the Telegram. Since one and a half years, Russia is trying to block the messenger service, but he is still available. I would imagine that Google pays a penalty, but that will be for the company a negligible amount. The group does not intend to make life difficult. You don’t see the fact that Google manifests itself publicly to the whole story.

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Roskomnador is a toothless Tiger, if you will. Although there are many laws, the Internet provider restrict, or about the media law by 2017, according to the foreign institutions as agent classified, and thus forbidden can be. But by using VPN (virtual private networks with which you can surf safely and anonymously – ed), people still have their access to all kinds of websites, which are actually locked. This gets even the grandma next door.

How your evaluation is alerted to the Russian government because of the Internet?

Putin really doesn’t understand how the Internet works, it is suspect. For civil society it is an important alternative source of information. For example, the opposition Alexei Navalny has posted on his YouTube channel revealing videos about the corruption of the government, the high waves hit. The Kremlin has tried again and again, these freedoms of Russians in the Internet to restrict. But the technology, the Internet, this is the future. Russia will not be able to stop the future on a permanent basis.

Anton Merkulov, is a Russian Internet expert and journalist. He moderated currently a broadcast of the online radio Satoshi FM. In the past, Merkulov was, among other things, for the messenger services Viber and FireChat to operate.