Archive for Media, Internet, Social Media, Television

Russian independent radio board chairman says not aiming to destroy station

Russian Gas Facility file photo

(Interfax – November 18, 2014) Mikhail Lesin, chairman of the board of directors of Gazprom-Media, which owns the Russian editorially independent radio station Ekho Moskvy, met the station’s members of staff on 18 November, privately-owned Russian news agency Interfax reported on the same day. They met to discuss the ongoing dispute between Lesin and Aleksey

Gazprom Media to consider proposal on selling stake in Echo of Moscow to minority shareholders – editor

File Photo of Interview on Ekho Moskvy Radio

(Interfax – November 19, 2014) Gazprom Media Board Chairman Mikhail Lesin is ready to consider a proposal from the Echo of Moscow radio minority shareholders on selling them a controlling stake belonging to Gazprom Media, Echo of Moscow Editor-in-Chief Alexei Venediktov said. “Mikhail Lesin said at a meeting with the editorial board [on Tuesday] that,

Magazine Pays Homage to Embattled Russian Activists With Global Thinkers List

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber- November 19, 2014) Two Russian rights advocates have been included on Foreign Policy magazine’s list of the top 100 leading global thinkers for their roles in raising contentious issues surrounding this year’s Sochi Olympic Games. LGBT rights defender Yelena Klimova and environmental activist Yevgeny Vitishko were included in

Russia launches its own ‘Wikipedia’

File Photo of Little Russian Girl at Laptop Next to Globe

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – November 17, 2014) It’s already got its own search engine called Sputnik, but now in an effort to better control the contents on RuNet, the Kremlin plans to launch its own version of Wikipedia. The Russian version of the user-generated encyclopaedia is designed to give “citizens more detailed and

Embattled Ekho Moskvy’s Long Record Of Riling Officials

File Photo of Interview on Ekho Moskvy Radio

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Carl Schreck – November 18, 2014) The doggedly independent Russian radio station Ekho Moskvy is facing an existential crisis this week, with its editorial leadership and its operations due to be scrutinized in a snap shareholders meeting on November 21 called by state-owned Gazprom-Media, which holds a controlling stake in the

Russia Tightens Control Over Foreign Ownership of Print Media

World Map Showing Continents, Greens, Browns, Ice

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – November 17, 2014) Foreign companies will soon have to seek government permission before buying a more than 25 percent stake in newspapers or magazines in Russia, extending state control in an industry still reeling from legal changes earlier this year, business daily Vedomosti reported late last week.

Pressure mounts on independent Russian media as legal net tightens

Collage of Russian Newspapers

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Sam Skove, special to RBTH – November 14, 2014) In recent months, newspapers, radio stations and websites have lost staff while new laws put restrictions on media ownership and advertising. Meanwhile, billions of rubles are being plowed into Kremlin-backed media outlets such as RT and new kid on

Launch of Sputnik Comes Amid High Stakes in Media War

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber – November 12, 2014) The Kremlin strengthened its position in the drawn-out media war with the West this week with the launch of Sputnik, an international multi-platform news agency meant to provide a pro-Russian alternative to Western media coverage, as Russia’s independent media outlets struggle to stay afloat.

Moscow Times: Most Russians Say State-Run Media ‘Objective’ in Ukraine Coverage

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Allison Quinn – November 13, 2014) Most Russians believe that the country’s state-run news agencies have provided objective coverage of the events unfolding during the Ukraine conflict, a poll by the Levada Center revealed Wednesday. Fifty-nine percent of respondents to the poll, conducted between Oct. 24 and 27, said they

FEEDBACK REQUESTED: Thanks for following Johnson’s Russia List! We would love to hear from you …

St. Basil's file photo

Thank you very much for following Johnson’s Russia List, with 7,454 followers on twitter and counting … 2,804 persons “liking” the JRL on facebook and counting … thousands subscribing to the core e-mail newsletter … and thousands visiting the JRL web home … Do you have any feedback you care to share about the JRL

Kommersant Editor Steps Down Amid Rumors of Pressure From Above

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Allison Quinn – November 11, 2014) The editor-in-chief of business daily Kommersant has resigned, triggering speculation Monday that he was forced out over a recent article in the newspaper about oil giant Rosneft. While theories behind the move multiplied and media reports fluctuated between calling it a dismissal and a

Interfax: Head of Kremlin rights council deplores CNN’s decision to quit Russia

Mikhail Fedotov file photo

MOSCOW. Nov 11 (Interfax) – The decision of the news television station CNN International to end broadcasts in Russia will “deplete” the information picture, head of the Russian presidential Human Rights Council Mikhail Fedotov told Interfax. “This is certainly bad news. The fact that CNN will stop broadcasting in Russia will deplete our information picture

CNN is allowed to broadcast on cable and satellite channels in Russia – ministry

Satellite Dishes

(Interfax – November 11, 2014) Russian laws are not stop the CNN television network from broadcasting on cable and satellite channels in Russia, the country’s Communications and Mass Media Ministry said in a press release. “Following the CNN television channel’s announcement that it will soon end broadcasts in Russia, the Communications and Mass Media Ministry

Cable TV Channel CNN Says It Will End Russian Broadcasts in 2015

Map of Russia and Russian Flag adapted from images at state.gov

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – November 11, 2014) Cable news channel CNN will end its broadcasts in Russia starting on Jan.1, after the country passed a law restricting foreign ownership of media outlets. Time Warner, which owns CNN, said it had notified its Russian cable distributors VimpelCom and Akado that it would stop broadcasting in

RIA Novosti: Ofcom Attempting to Meddle With RT Editorial Policy: Editor-in-Chief

File Photo of British Parliament Building Including Saint Stephen's Tower Containing Big Ben

UK’s media regulator Ofcom is trying to influence the channel’s editorial policy by wrongly accusing RT of biased coverage of the Ukrainian military conflict, RT Editor-in Chief Margarita Simonyan believes. MOSCOW, November 11 (RIA Novosti) – In accusing RT TV-channel of biased coverage of the Ukrainian conflict, British media regulator Ofcom is trying to influence

Re: Kargopol

Map of Russia

Subject: Kargopol Date: Mon, 10 Nov 2014 04:03:29 -0600 From: William Brumfield <william.brumfield@gmail.com> My current article for Russia beyond the Headlines is devoted to the Cathedral Square ensemble of Kargopol, one of the most beautiful of northern Russia’s ancient towns rbth.com/travel/2014/11/07/the_shrines_of_kargopol_preserving_the_art_of_the_russian_north_41243.html For best results with the slide show (full screen), click the 4-arrow icon at

Re: from a Russian journalist Igor Rotar

Ukraine Map and Flag

From: Igor Rotar <igorotar@gmail.com> Date: Mon, Nov 3, 2014 at 12:37 PM Subject: from a Russian journalist Igor Rotar My name is Igor Rotar.I am a veteran journalist and researcher who recently received a green card in the USA and currently lives in San Diego. I am the author of three books about the ethnic

Firing of Ekho Moskvy Reporter Prompts Speculation Over Fate of Editor-in-Chief

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – November 7, 2014) A state-controlled media holding has fired an Ekho Moskvy radio journalist, citing ethical norms, and threatened to dismiss the radio station’s long-standing chief editor who has led it as one of the final strongholds of media freedom in the country. The dismissal of Alexander

EVENT: The Menace of Unreality: How the Kremlin Weaponizes Information, Culture, and Money – Nov. 13 in Washington, D.C.

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

Subject: EVENT / “The Menace of Unreality: How the Kremlin Weaponizes Information, Culture, and Money” Date: Thu, 6 Nov 2014 From: Institute of Modern Russia <info@imrussia.org> Upcoming Event IMR Report on Kremlin Information War To Be Launched in Washington, D.C. On November 13, editor-in-chief of The Interpreter, Michael Weiss, and journalist Peter Pomerantsev will present

Russian Tabloid Deletes Article Claiming Navalny Received Kremlin Funds

Alexei Navalny file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – November 6, 2014) Russian tabloid LifeNews removed a report from its website Thursday that claimed prominent opposition activist Alexey Navalny had secretly been receiving state funds after the Kremlin vehemently denied the allegations, the TASS news agency reported. “Reports about the Kremlin financing [Navalny] are absolute nonsense and a stunt

Interfax: State pollster denies Russian TV brainwashes viewers about Putin

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Interfax – October 29, 2014) Russian TV is not a zombie box as it speaks of President Vladimir Putin not only in glowing terms but also carries criticisms of him, the head of the Russian Public Opinion Research Centre (VTsIOM), Valeriy Fedorov, has said. He was speaking at a news conference in Moscow on 29

Vast Majority of Russians Think Foreign Media Criticize Putin to Weaken Russia

World Map Showing Continents, Greens, Browns, Ice

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Allison Quinn – October 30, 2014) The overwhelming majority of Russians view negative foreign media coverage of President Vladimir Putin and of Russia in general as an attempt to destabilize the country, pollster VTsIOM revealed Wednesday. The poll revealed that 87 percent of respondents see such ulterior motives in critical

Navalny Wins Court Case Against Federal Media Watchdog

Alexei Navalny file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – October 29, 2014) Opposition activist Alexei Navalny announced his victory Tuesday in a lawsuit challenging the Russian federal media watchdog’s refusal to register his news outlet as an official media outlet. Navalny filed an application with the agency on June 2 to set up the “Alexei Navalny Information Agency,” a

Russian Media Behemoth Set To Launch Wave Of Foreign Bureaus

World Map Showing Continents, Greens, Browns, Ice

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Tom Balmforth – MOSCOW – October 29, 2014) Rossiya Segodnya, Russia’s state-run media conglomerate, is reportedly preparing to open local bureaus in 29 world capitals, a move expanding the Kremlin’s global media presence amid what senior Russian officials call an “information war” with the West. The new bureaus are set to

Re: 2014-#220-Johnson’s Russia List (Adomanis on Applebaum)

Map of Russia

Subject: Re: 2014-#220-Johnson’s Russia List (Adomanis on Applebaum) Date: Tue, 28 Oct 2014 From: Martin Dewhirst <martin.dewhirst@googlemail.com> Anne Applebaum (whom I read but do not know personally) does not need a low-profile person like myself to spring to her defense, but I would guess that she is too busy, and would consider it beneath her dignity, to respond

Russian Intellectuals Ask State-Run TV to Admit Falsehoods in Ukraine Reports

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – October 24, 2014) A congress of Russian intellectuals has appealed to the head of state-run Channel One television to acknowledge “falsifications” in its reporting on Ukraine, holding the network accountable for the deaths of young Russians who were moved to go and fight there. The congress told

Russia’s Liberal Ekho Moskvy Braces for Inspection After Running Interview With Putin-Critic Navalny

Alexei Navalny file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – October 22, 2014) The Emergency Situations Ministry has announced an unscheduled inspection of the offices of Ekho Mosvky two days after a journalist at the opposition-friendly radio station said it had been threatened with “problems” for running an interview with opposition leader Alexei Navalny. News website Slon.ru cited the station’s

Censorship Fears Mount as Officials Move to Tackle ‘Negativity’ in Russian Media

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – October 18, 2014) Days after President Vladimir Putin signed a law forcing foreign companies to sell stakes in Russian media, members of Russia’s upper house of parliament have advocated applying state pressure to combat a glut of “negative” news that is poisoning the country’s image, a news report said Friday.

Putin’s Glamour Deemed Threat to National Security

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Ivan Nechepurenko – October 17, 2014) In 2009, during his stint as prime minister, President Vladimir Putin flirted with being a columnist at literary magazine Russky Pioner, famous for its ostentatious parties. A vehicle for the literary ambition of the Russian elite, its contributors have also included presidential aide Vladislav

Moscow Times: Majority of Russians Endorse Internet Censorship

File Photo Dmitry Medvedev at Desk with Laptop Computer

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – October 15, 2014) The majority of the Russian population supports a curb on Internet freedoms in theory, a new study showed Tuesday. Fifty-four percent of the respondents in a new poll by the independent Levada Center said the World Wide Web had enough dangerous websites to mandate censorship. Another 31

RIA Novosti: HRW Calls on Russia to Guarantee Freedom of Expression

Collage of Russian Newspapers

MOSCOW, October 16 (RIA Novosti) – Russia should make every effort to guarantee freedom of expression, support media pluralism, a Human Rights Watch (HRW) researcher told RIA Novosti, regarding the new law, which has reduced the possible share of foreign stockholders in Russian media. “An essential feature of freedom of expression in a democratic society

Poll: Russians use Internet to find out news, watch movies and connect with friends

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Interfax – October 13, 2014) The Internet usage index in Russia is 66 percent, the same as a year ago, and 46 percent of users go online daily, the Russian Public Opinion Study Center (VTsIOM) said. Most active users are persons aged 18 to 24, people with higher education (66 percent in each of these

Interfax: Russia not planning to limit internet traffic, nationalize domains – minister

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Interfax – October 2, 2014) The Russian authorities have no plans to limit the number of trans-border internet exchange points (IXP) or to regulate the management of the country’s local domains, privately-owned Russian news agency Interfax reported on 2 October. “Such an idea is not on the agenda,” Russian Telecommunications Minister Nikolay Nikiforov told journalists

Can Russia Disconnect From The Internet?

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(RFE/RL – Luke Johnson – October 02, 2014) After chairing a meeting of the Russian Security Council on October 1, President Vladimir Putin insisted the Kremlin was not planning to limit access to the Internet or put it under total state control. The authorities would, however, take additional measures to increase cybersecurity and continue to shut

Interfax: Russian government develops measure to prevent disruptions of Russian Internet

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

MOSCOW. Oct 1 (Interfax) – The Russian government is developing measures to prevent attempts to disrupt the operations of the Russian segment of the Internet, Russian President Vladimir Putin said. “It is necessary to continue to promptly prevent attempts to disrupt the stable operations of the Russian segment of the Internet. Interagency exercises to prevent

Facebook, Google and Twitter hit by new Russian internet law

File Photo of Little Girl at Computer Next to Globe

(Business New Europe – bne.ru – September 30, 2014) Russia’s official communications regulator Roskomnadzor says it will enforce a recently passed law that could force foreign-owned internet companies to store the data of Russian users on Russia data centres, as part of a Kremlin drive towards what it calls ‘information sovereignty’. Major US-based internet companies

The Russian Matrix; On their TV channels, Ukrainians and Russians have been getting completely different versions of what has been happening in Ukraine in recent months. Just like The Matrix.

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(opendemocracy.net – Oleg Kashin – September 24, 2014) Oleg Kashin is a prominent Russian journalist. His work has appeared in Kommersant, Lenta, Colta and numerous other publications. One of the main elements of collective consciousness in post-Soviet Russia is a belief that this consciousness can be manipulated in the most unlikely ways. The Hollywood film

15 Global Firms Hit by Russia’s Law Limiting Foreign Ownership of Media

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – September 29, 2014) Russia’s law limiting foreign ownership of media in Russia to 20 percent will overturn the country’s media scene. Foreign companies have been at the forefront of developing media in Russia since the early 1990s. They own stakes in hundreds of newspapers, magazines and television stations. Under the

Curbs on Foreign Ownership Will Gut Russia’s Media

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – September 28, 2014) An era in Russian media ended Friday as parliament passed a law limiting foreign ownership in domestic media assets at 20 percent, hitting some of the world’s largest media companies and turning back the clock on an industry that has thrived on foreign brands

Interfax: Reporter Stenin dies in Ukrainian attack on refugee convoy, says Investigative Committee

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Interfax – September 3, 2014) Rossiya Segodnya news agency photographer Andrei Stenin died on the Snizhne-Dmytrivka road in southeastern Ukraine in the Ukrainian army’s attack on a refugee convoy, Russian Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin told Interfax. “Detectives have discovered circumstances of the journalist’s death : A. Stenin was on a field trip to Snizhne,

Interfax: TV main source of info for most Russians on Ukraine events; over half believe it is unbiased – poll

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Interfax – August 29, 2014) An overwhelming majority of Russians – 94 percent – are following the events in Ukraine, and television remains the primary source of information for 93 percent of them, the Levada Center sociological service told Interfax with reference to a nationwide public opinion poll it conducted on August 22-25. About a

Anders Aslund: RE: Response [re: Ukraine, Russia, Putin, Media, JRL]

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

Subject: RE: Response Date: Tue, 26 Aug 2014 From: Anders Aslund <AAslund@PIIE.COM> Dear David, Thank you for your inordinate attention you have given to my personal words to you. I appreciate your kind consideration. At the same time, I am surprised that anybody can object to me calling your list biased in favor of Putin.

JRL Helpful Guide to Avoiding “Russian Lies”

World Map Showing Continents, Greens, Browns, Ice

[note from web editor: check back for activated hyperlinks] DJ: On rare occasion “Russian lies” show up in a few of these sources but for the most part you are safe. All of these have appeared in JRL and have achieved a greater coherence of message than, say, Russia Direct or the Valdai Discussion Club.

RE: 2014-#184-Johnson’s Russia List/Russian lies

Map of European Portion of Former Soviet Union

Subject: RE: 2014-#184-Johnson’s Russia List/Russian lies Date: Sat, 23 Aug 2014 From: Anders Aslund <AAslund@PIIE.COM> David: Why do you run so many obvious Russian lies, such as this one? RIA Novosti: Shelling Kills Hundreds in Besieged Luhansk in East Ukraine. Frankly, I have stopped reading your list as I see little but Putin propaganda in

RIA Novosti: Watchdog Urges Kiev to Reverse Ban on Russian TV Channels

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

MOSCOW, August 21 (RIA Novosti) – A New York-based media rights watchdog has hit out at Ukrainian authorities over their ban on Russian television broadcasts in the country and has urged Kiev to immediately restore unrestricted access to information, a statement published on its website Thursday said. “We are concerned by Ukraine’s ban on Russian

Million-Man Army of Programmers Won’t Free Russia From Western Software

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – August 20, 2014) Foreign software has become the latest target of Russian officials’ clamorous calls for self-sufficiency, with plans to swiftly replace all foreign imports and triple the number of Russian programmers heralding a crusade that analysts consider misguided and hopelessly optimistic. “We stand for complete sovereignty

RIA Novosti: Russian experts speculate on why prime minister’s Twitter account was hacked

File Photo Dmitry Medvedev at Desk with Laptop Computer

(RIA Novosti – August 14, 2014) Moscow, 14 August: Russian Prime Minister Dmitriy Medvedev’s Twitter account [https://twitter.com/MedvedevRussia], which was hacked on Thursday [14 August], may have been hacked in response to the law that imposes stricter liability on bloggers and the partial ban on anonymous access to the Internet via [public] wi-fi networks, or because

No Passports Required to Use Public Wi-Fi, Moscow City Hall Says

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – August 9, 2014) Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev signed a decree Friday instructing public Wi-Fi network operators to require user identification – but only in certain spots. The decree was almost immediately greeted with outrage from many residents of Moscow, where Wi-Fi is widely available in parks, cafes, schools and on

Ban on anonymous access to public Wi-Fi irritates Russians

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Igor Rozin, RBTH – August 11, 2014) A government decree demanding that Russians show their passports when accessing public Wi-Fi has agitated Russian society. A few hours after the decree was issued, the Moscow Mayor and the Ministry of Communications’ press offices explained that the decision did not

AW: 2014-#166-Johnson’s Russia List [Adomeit’s first note][re: editorial policies, Putin, Soviet collapse, translation]

Aerial View of Kremlin and Environs

Subject: AW: 2014-#166-Johnson’s Russia List [Adomeit’s first note] Date: Thu, 31 Jul 2014 From: Hannes Adomeit (hannes.adomeit@t-online.de) From a senior German Russia expert: I completely agree with the observation expressed in yesterday’s issue of the senior U.S. official and the senior U.S. academic about JRL’s loss of impartiality. The bias is also amply reflected in

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