Archive for Media, Internet, Social Media, Television

Nabi Abdullaev to Replace Andrew McChesney as Moscow Times Editor

Moscow Times logo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 15, 2014) Nabi Abdullaev, a former deputy editor-in-chief of The Moscow Times, will replace Andrew McChesney at the helm of the newspaper later this week, MT publisher Ekaterina Movsumova said Monday. Abdullaev, who most recently headed RIA Novosti’s foreign-language news service, said he would concentrate on further developing The

Interfax: Kremlin human rights adviser defends Moscow’s taking VOA off air

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

MOSCOW. April 10 (Interfax) – A member of the Human Rights Council, a Kremlin advisory body, has defended Moscow’s decision not to renew a contract to broadcast Voice of America in Russia. “Russian officials were not proactive in this situation. In this information war, which hasn’t been unleashed by Russia, it’s Moscow that’s been behaving

Russian journalism in serious crisis – expert

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Interfax – Moscow, April 9, 2014) Secretary of the Union of Journalists of Russia [UJR] Pavel Gutionov has described the current state of affairs in Russian journalism as the most serious crisis in its entire history. “Our profession is experiencing the most serious crisis in its entire history. It has even been suggested that journalism

Anatole Klyosov: The original Soviet internet geek

File Photo Dmitry Medvedev at Desk with Laptop Computer

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Dan Pototsky, RBTH – April 7, 2014) This year marks 20 years since the internet first appeared in Russia. The first Soviet internet user, the well-known Soviet-American scientist Anatole A. Klyosov, speaks about the internet in the USSR, espionage and the surreal logic of history in an exclusive

The 20 Russian News Outlets You Need To Read Before They Get The Axe

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Daisy Sindelar – April 1, 2014) A pro-Kremlin political news site says it has developed a computer algorithm to determine which media outlets are the most anti-Russian. The politonline.ru website, part of the Pravda.ru media holding, says it has created a special system that vets media content for suggestive words and

Dozhd Gets 50-Day Lifeline After Telethon

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Natalya Krainova – April 1, 2014) Independent television channel Dozhd has extended its operation for at least 50 days in a fundraising campaign launched to save the channel after major cable networks refused to air it. The money was collected during a week-long telethon from March 24 to 30 that

Human Rights Council concerned about battle against independent journalism in Russia

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Interfax – March 31, 2014) The Russian Presidential Human Rights Council urges taking the professional community’s opinions into account when making decisions on closing mass media outlets. “These offensives against independent mass media outlets are characterized with the fact that owners or administrative people are leaving the legal field and operate on general notions of

Minister Sees End to U.S. IT Purchases

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – March 27, 2014) U.S. spying could cost software companies said Communications and Mass Media Minister Nikolai Nikiforov, in a message attached to an Instagram shot of a recent Wall Street Journal article detailing renewed U.S interest in spying on Russia. “U.S. security services have put an end to the further

The Pros And Cons Of Propaganda

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Brian Whitmore – March 20, 2014) Propaganda works. Or at least it’s working for the time being. In concluding his speech to a joint session of parliament this week, Vladimir Putin claimed that 92 percent of Russians favored the annexation of Crimea. The number was inflated, but not by much, according

From your friendly editor: a goodbye and some unsolicited advice

Collage of Russian Newspapers

(Moscow News – themoscownews.com – Natalia Antonova – March 14, 2014) In the Russian media, the season of change, some of it sad and sudden, continues. Now it is my turn to say my goodbye and announce my imminent departure from The Moscow News. I also want to use this platform to give everyone who

Intellectual Property Rights Case Load Overwhelming Fledgling Court

Map of Russia

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Delphine d’Amora – March 12, 2014) Overworked and understaffed, Russia’s fledgling Intellectual Property Rights Court is watching nervously as its case load continues to climb. “Compared to analogous courts in Europe, we have a very high case load … and an increase in workload leads to the risk of a

New TV Show Turns Ethnic Tension Into Comedy

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Christopher Brennan – March 11, 2014) Russia’s largest television stations broadcast all over the country, bringing the same faces to Muscovites, Siberians and Caucasus natives alike. However, a new series is taking this a step further, representing Russia’s ethnic diversity in one sitcom family and confronting the controversial topic of

RIA Novosti Begins Cutting 1/3 of Staff

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber – March 12, 2014) RIA Novosti, Russia’s largest state-owned news agency, is undergoing the final stages of its liquidation three months after President Vladimir Putin decreed its dismantlement and mandated the creation of Rossia Segodnya, a global news agency to be headed by a Kremlin loyalist. New details

Major Ukrainian TV provider drops Russian channels

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(RIA Novosti – March 12, 2014) One of Ukraine’s largest television providers has announced it will suspend broadcasts of several major Russian channels, the UNN Ukrainian news agency said Wednesday. The TV provider Volya, with about 20 percent of the market, said it was notifying subscribers across the country about the service changes, UNN reported.

Anonymous launches cyber attacks in defense of Ukraine

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Dan Pototsky, RBTH – March 10, 2014) Hackers have taken down several Russian media website in the past week and alleged attacks on defense infrastructure in response to Russia’s actions in Ukraine. On March 7, the website of Rossiyskaya Gazeta, one of the largest Russian dailies, the paper

Heads of Russian TV stations reaffirm importance of unbiased coverage of Ukraine events

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Interfax – March 4, 2014) The heads of Russian leading television stations have responded to their Ukrainian colleagues’ call for unbiased coverage of the ongoing events in Ukraine. The general directors of Channel One, the All-Russian State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company (VGTRK) and NTV, Konstantin Ernst, Oleg Dborodeyev and Vladimir Kulistikov, said in an

RIA Novosti Employees Await Word on Fate of News Agency

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Natalya Krainova – February 27, 2014) Less than two weeks ahead of the deadline set by the Kremlin for the abolishment of major state-funded news agency RIA Novosti, its employees say they still lack details about what will happen to their jobs or when the company will cease its work.

More Pressure on Liberal Media as Ekho Moskvy Gets New CEO

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(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Oleg Sukhov – February 19, 2014) Yekaterina Pavlova, a former deputy head of the pro-Kremlin Voice of Russia radio station, has been appointed chief executive of opposition-leaning radio station Ekho Moskvy. The decision Tuesday triggered speculation that the Kremlin was seeking to bring the station under its control. The news

NEWSLINK: What the Papers Say, Feb. 18, 2014

Collage of Russian Newspapers

["What the Papers Say, Feb. 18, 2014" - Moscow Times/BBC Monitoring - themoscowtimes.com/news/article/what-the-papers-say-feb-18-2014/494765.html] The Moscow Times and BBC Monitoring review Russian print publications. Nezavisimaya Gazeta 1. Alexandra Samarina article headlined “Waiting for personnel changes” predicts that a number of senior officials including governors may lose their jobs after the Sochi Olympics. The author reports on

Rossiya Segodnya Head Given Presidential Award

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – February 18, 2014) State television host Dmitry Kiselyov, known for his strong opposition to gay rights in Russia, has been awarded the Order of Service to the Fatherland by President Vladimir Putin. A presidential decree published on the government’s legal documents website said the honor was bestowed on Kiselyov for

Three Statistics with Long Shadows for Russia

File Photo of Crowd of Russians with One Waving Russian Flag

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, February 18, 2014) Three newly released statistics – one on births in Kazakhstan, a second on how Russians understand events in Ukraine, and a third on where websites of the .ru domain are hosted – say more about where the Russian Federation is heading than do more

Russian Writers Call for Free Speech as Pasternak’s Birthday Celebrated

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – D. Garrison Golubock and Olga Chetina – February 17, 2014) Feb. 11 marked the 124th anniversary of the birth of Boris Pasternak, the famed Soviet author best known for his book “Doctor Zhivago,” which was published abroad after being banned in the Soviet Union. Pasternak’s birthday was celebrated with great

NEWSLINK: Putin and the media – Dreams about Russia – Beyond the spectacle of the Sochi Olympics is a crackdown on Russia’s media

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

["Putin and the media - Dreams about Russia - Beyond the spectacle of the Sochi Olympics is a crackdown on Russia's media" - The Economist - February 15, 2014 - economist.com/news/europe/21596580-beyond-spectacle-sochi-olympics-crackdown-russias-media-dreams-about-russia] The Economist reports on concerns over media freedoms in Russia, including actions taken in the lead-up to the Sochi Olympics: Just as Vladimir Putin’s

NEWSLINK: Russians use ‘love’ emoticon on Facebook more than any other

Red Valentine's Heart

["Russians use 'love' emoticon on Facebook more than any other" - San Francisco Business Times - Steven E.F. Brown- February 13, 2014 - bizjournals.com/sanfrancisco/blog/2014/02/russians-love-emoticon-facebook-berkeley.html?page=all] The San Francisco Business Times reports that the top emoticon for Russian facebook users is the love icon.  Yet researchers at Cal-Berkeley and Cambridge provide a mixed assessment of what that

NEWSLINK: What the Papers Say, Feb. 14, 2014

Collage of Russian Newspapers

["What the Papers Say, Feb. 14, 2014" - The Moscow Times/BBC Monitoring - themoscowtimes.com/news/article/what-the-papers-say-feb-14-2014/494555.html] The Moscow Times and BBC Monitoring parse the latest news from Russian print newspapers. Nezavisimaya Gazeta 1. Sergei Neverov article headlined “People’s support is priority” says that today the State Duma is to pass in the third reading a bill on

Russia Maintains Status Quo in 2014 Press Freedom Rankings

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – February 13, 2014) Russia came 148th out of 180 countries on this year’s press freedom rankings from Reporters Without Borders, keeping the same spot that it occupied last year. France-based Reporters Without Borders said that the level of freedom of information violations throughout the world increased by 1.8 percent compared

Ex-Olympian Rodnina Apologizes For Racist Twitter Picture

File Photo of Sochi Olympics Banner Near Highway in Warm Weather with Vehicle and Cyclicsts Nearby

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – February 11, 2014) Irina Rodnina, the famed figure skater who lit the Olympic flame at the Sochi opening ceremony, has said that a racially insensitive tweet sent from her account and featuring U.S. President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle was posted by hackers. The doctored –

RIA Novosti: Russian State TV Journalist Plagiarizes Nationalist Website

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

MOSCOW, February 10 (RIA Novosti) – A reporter for Russia’s leading television channel admitted lifting huge chunks of a nationalist report about the Sochi Olympics’ opening ceremony for use in her own report, which aired over the weekend. Irada Zeinalova said she quoted a report by Kremlin-bashing web resource Sputnik & Pogrom without attribution for

RIA Novosti: Russia’s Top Satellite Company Drops Liberal Dozhd TV Channel

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

MOSCOW, February 10 (RIA Novosti) – Russia’s major satellite provider stopped broadcasting Dozhd independent television channel Monday after the network became embroiled into a controversy over an opinion poll about World War II. Tricolor TV, Russia’s biggest satellite TV provider, said a week ago that its board of directors had unanimously decided to exclude the

Shared Fame and Shame at the Sochi Olympics

File Photo of Sochi Olympics Banner Near Highway in Warm Weather with Vehicle and Cyclicsts Nearby

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – John Freedman, Moscow Times theater editor – February 10, 2014) I once wrote most of what I planned to be a book about Russia. I got as far as sending chapters out to publishers. One of the few editors who was kind enough to reject me personally explained why my

Arab Spring in Russia’s Backyard

Kremlin and St. Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Michael Bohm – February 7, 2014) Michael Bohm is opinion page editor of The Moscow Times. For Russians watching state television news over the past several weeks, the message about the political turmoil in Ukraine is clear: The anti-government protests are a U.S. plot. Take, for example, this Jan. 22

Russia’s ‘Optimistic Channel’ Fighting For Survival

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(RFE/RL  – rferl.org – Tom Balmforth – MOSCOW – February 5, 2014) Just shy of four years ago a new private television channel appeared on the Russian media scene. With a new generation of talent, snappy and hip programming, and a politically independent line, Dozhd (Rain) TV presented a sharp contrast to the drab and

Russian rights council asks minister to probe providers’ dropping of Dozhd TV

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Interfax – February 4, 2014) A number of members of the presidential human rights council have sent a letter to Russian Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev asking him to check the actions of major Russian satellite TV operators that have dropped independent television channel Dozhd from their packages, privately-owned Russian news agency Interfax reported on 4

Dozhd Television Faces Closure But Strives to Stay Afloat

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Oleg Sukhov – February 5, 2014) Dozhd, Russia’s only opposition-oriented television channel, on Tuesday announced that the decision of large cable providers to drop it could lead to its closure and attributed the move to a Kremlin-driven campaign to get rid of them. All major cable companies, including OnLime, Akado,

Moscow Tightens Controls over Internet, But Those Affected Directed to Workarounds

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, February 4, 2014) The Russian authorities are putting ever more pressure on the Internet in the hopes of imposing Kremlin control on the last relatively free segment of the Russian media, but their efforts are being countered by those most affected who are offering hat they describe

Dry the rain: the disgraceful hounding of Dozhd TV

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow News – themoscownews.com – Natalia Antonova – January 31, 2014) The scandal surrounding the independent Dozhd TV channel has so far progressed in a predictable and chilling fashion: Media organization does something that many people find to be tactless and/or offensive, said people express their dismay, the media organization apologizes… and then surrealism begins

A non-review of Anna Arutunyan’s ‘The Putin Mystique’

File Photo of Vladimir Putin Sitting at Desk

(Moscow News – themoscownews.com – Natalia Antonova – January 30, 2014) Anna Arutunyan’s “The Putin Mystique” came out in Britain this week, and this article is not an attempt to review the book. Although we frequently highlight the accomplishments of our friends and colleagues as part of the buys of the week rubric, an actual

Russian TV Promoting ‘Permanent Hysteria’ about Ukraine, Commentator Says

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, January 29, 2014) Any Russian with access to the Internet can get some idea of the dizzying and kaleidoscopic developments in Ukraine, but Russians who rely on government-controlled television are being fed a more or less constant diet of propaganda designed to promote “permanent hysteria” about that

RIA Novosti: Russian Prosecutors Check TV Channel Over WWII Poll

St. Petersburg

MOSCOW, January 30 (RIA Novosti) – Staff of an online TV station in Russia face a threat of up to two years in prison after prosecutors announced an “extremism” investigation Thursday into an opinion poll concerning World War II. The liberal Dozhd (“Rain”) channel triggered the ire of conservatives by asking on its website whether

Legal Online Video Has Inroads in Russia

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Eradzh Nidoev – January 29, 2014) While online video streaming in the U.S. has shown that the Internet can be effectively monetized by film and television, the fear of piracy in Russia has limited the spread of such services here. Only now, a few companies are taking the plunge and

The Artistic Community Responds to Events in Kiev

Maidan Square file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – John Freedman – January 27, 2014) When the going gets tough, as we have seen repeatedly in recent years, the tough take to Facebook. At least that’s what they do in this part of the world. So it has been with the events in Kiev – call them protests or

Russia Beyond the Headlines: Russian teenager wrongly labelled as author of Kaptoxa malware

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – By Dan Pototsky, RBTH  – January 24, 2014) Experts at the company Group-IB have officially disproved reports identifying Sergey Tarasov, purportedly 17 and a resident of St. Petersburg, as the author of the malicious software known as Kaptoxa, which was used in one of the largest successful attacks

The Moscow News Stops Print Edition


(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – January 24, 2014) The Moscow News, an English-language Moscow weekly that recently became an insert in the Russian-language Moskovskiye Novosti, has been told to shut down its print edition. Editor Natalia Antonova wrote on the news agency’s website that “the print edition of The Moscow News has been shut down

Print edition of The Moscow News shut down

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow News – themoscownews.com – Natalia Antonova – January 23, 2014) Dear readers, the print edition of The Moscow News has been shut down by order of the management. The January 23 issue, which came out today as part of Moskovskiye Novosti, was our last print publication until further notice. Our website remains active, and

RIA Novost: Deputies Withdraw Bill to Label Media Firms ‘Foreign Agents’

Russian State Duma Building file photo

MOSCOW, January 22 (RIA Novosti) ­ A bill that would have branded Russian media outlets that receive more than 50 percent of their funding from abroad as “foreign agents” was withdrawn from consideration in the State Duma on Tuesday. The bill’s authors said they had decided to reintroduce the legislation at a later date with

RIA Novosti: Russia’s Defense Tsar Wants ‘Optimistic News Factory’

Dmitry Rogozin file photo

MOSCOW, January 14 (RIA Novosti) ­ The Russian defense industry will create its own “news factory” to offset the “Russophobic” produce of state-owned television channels, a senior official said. Russian television revels in vulgarity and sensationalism, and its makers show “disdain for everything created by domestic labor and Russia’s great culture,” said Deputy Prime Minister

Expulsion of U.S. Journalist Sparks Controversy Before Olympics

Truck at Russian Border Crossing

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Ivan Nechepurenko – January 14, 2014) Russia has barred a U.S. journalist for five years in a move that has triggered a frenzy between Russian authorities and Western media on Tuesday, signaling possible heightened tensions ahead of upcoming Winter Olympic Games in Sochi. It was not clear whether David Satter,

Putin Gets Into the ‘Selfie’ Game

Kremlin and Moscow Environs Aerial View

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – January 13, 2014) Though he may lack the Twitter following of his tech-obsessed Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, President Vladimir Putin was social media star over the weekend, as a “selfie” photo of the president and a young boy made the rounds on the Internet. [https://twitter.com/koffboy/status/422411344927653888] The picture of an unidentified

RIA Novosti: One in Three Russian Towns & Villages Have No Internet – Study

File Image of Stylized Eye Surrounded by Binary Code

MOSCOW, January 10 (RIA Novosti) ­ People living in more than a third of Russia’s small towns and villages have no access to the Internet, a new government study shows. Despite the boom in Internet use in Russia, some 6,700 localities have no opportunity to get online, the Ministry of Communications and Mass Media said

RIA Novosti: Russian TV Presenter Claims Strip-Searched at Miami Airport

Ksenia Sobchak file photo

MOSCOW, January 10 (RIA Novosti) ­ Russian TV celebrity and socialite Ksenia Sobchak has said she was strip-searched at Miami Airport after a security check wrongly detected explosives on her fingers, a claim the US authorities have denied. Sobchak, 32, formerly the host of a long-running reality show and now an anchor at an independent

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