Ukrainian Culture Ministry makes list of 117 Russian performers threatening national security

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Interfax – July 8, 2015) By way of implementing the law On Amendments to Certain Laws on the Protection of TV and Radio Space of Ukraine the Ukrainian Ministry of Culture has made a list of 117 performing artists from Russia that has been submitted to the relevant authorities, the ministry’s website says. The report notes that by way of […]

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Russia Beyond the Headlines: Dismissal of American vice rector in Nizhny Novgorod causes controversy

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

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Yekaterina Sinelschikova, RBTH – July 3, 2015) The dismissal of an American lecturer from a leading position at a Russian university following an “incriminating” report on television sparked talk of an increase in the harassment of foreigners. Russian lawmakers are planning to introduce a “patriotic stop list” – a list of foreign funds […]

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Kremlin Critic Emerges From Coma

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

(RFE/RL – June 2, 2015) Friends and allies of prominent Russian opposition activist Vladimir Kara-Murza, Jr., who mysteriously fell ill with poisoning symptoms in Moscow, say he has regained consciousness after a weeklong coma. “Vladimir has come out of a coma,” former Russian oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky said in a June 2 tweet. Kara-Murza, 33, is a coordinator for Open […]

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RIA Novosti: Russian state TV’s Crimea film attracts audience share of 40 per cent – research

Tower and Building Inside Kremlin

(RIA Novosti – March 17, 2015) Russian state television’s heavily promoted drama-documentary about the annexation of Crimea, “Crimea: The Road to the Motherland”, attracted an audience share of 39.6 per cent of viewers aged 18 and over, Russian state news agency RIA Novosti reported on 17 March, quoting data from market researchers TNS Gallup Media. The programme was shown on […]

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Russia’s Dozhd TV Defies Crackdown by Continuing Broadcasts From Apartment

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – December 9, 2014) Russia’s main independent television channel, Dozhd, has been forced to leave its Moscow studio for the second time in as many months, but is continuing its broadcasts from an apartment in the capital, news reports said. The digital channel has been struggling for survival ever since it was dropped […]

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The True Russia in Book ‘Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible’

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Ola Cichowlas – November 25, 2014) Television “is the only force that can unify and rule and bind this country,” British producer and journalist Peter Pomerantsev says in his superb debut book “Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible,” which follows the author’s decade-long career in factual television set against the backdrop of Moscow’s mega-rich […]

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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 October, as reported by privately-owned […]

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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 quarter of respondents – 25 […]

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Putin Now Down to One Ally – Moscow Television

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, July 24, 2014) Tsar Aleksandr III famously said that Russia has only two allies – its army and its fleet – but now, according to Rashit Akhmetov, the editor of “Zvezda Povolzhya,” Vladimir Putin is down to only one – Moscow television with its ability to shape and direct Russian opinion. In […]

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Arts world up in arms as Russia bans swearwords in films, books and TV

Movie Theater file photo

(Russia Beyond the Headliines – rbth.ru – Nikolai Litovkin, RBTH – July 2, 2014) A law making it illegal to use swearwords in television, movies, literature, media reporting, concerts, and theatrical productions entered into force on July 1. Violators will face stiff fines. Prominent figures have expressed their dismay over the ban, arguing that it will limit cultural expression. Russia’s […]

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50% of Russians Think TV Is Most Reliable Source of Information, Poll Shows

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 20, 2014) Half of all Russians consider television to be the most reliable source of information for domestic and international news coverage, a recent study of the Russian media environment has shown. The study published Tuesday by independent pollster Levada Center found that 50 percent of Russians – and 65 percent of Muscovites – […]

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The limitations of Russian propaganda in Ukraine; Russian TV is waging a propaganda war against Ukraine. But is it working?

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(opendemocracy.net – Joanna Szostek – June 11, 2014) Joanna Szostek is a postdoctoral researcher at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, UCL The long propaganda campaign waged by Russian television channels against Ukraine’s political leadership and the West is continuing unabated. This past weekend, one Sunday night news programme headlined the ‘savagery’ (zverstvo) of ‘Fascism’ in Ukraine, which […]

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Kiselyov Defends TV Network After Caucasus Footage Labeled as Ukraine

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Anna Dolgov – May 20, 2014) The deputy chief of a pro-Kremlin television holding has dismissed as an “accidental error” his network’s use of footage from a gunfight in the North Caucasus to illustrate supposed recent anti-Russian violence in eastern Ukraine, a news report said. The footage – first used in a Rossiya television report […]

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Media Minister Says No Barriers Against Independent TV Channel Dozhd

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – April 29, 2014) Russia’s communications minister has said there is no reason why independent channel Dozhd cannot return to cable television packages, in a sign of hope for the cash-strapped station. Communications and Mass Media Minister Nikolai Nikoforov said nothing was preventing Dozhd from being carried by cable television providers, and that the state was […]

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How opposition media survive in Russia

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Eremenko, RBTH – April 25, 2014) During his annual live TV call-in show on April 18, President Vladimir Putin promised that authorities will stop pressuring the liberal Dozhd TV channel. Dozhd (“Rain”) is now hoping to get picked up again by the cable providers that dropped it at the beginning of the […]

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Possible Light at the End of the Tunnel for Dozhd

Kremlin and Saint Basil's File Photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – D. Garrison Golubock – April 21, 2014) A favorable comment made by President Vladimir Putin during his annual call-in show on Thursday seems to have triggered a change of fortune for embattled independent television channel Dozhd, which is threatened with closure after being dropped by numerous major television operators. “If the disappearance of Dozhd from […]

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Putin’s Call-In Show Set for April 17, Reports Say

File Photo of Vladimir Putin Sitting at Desk

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Peter Spinella – April 7, 2014) President Vladimir Putin is expected to hold his annual call-in show on April 17, Russian media reports said Monday. The question-and-answer session will be broadcast on national television and radio stations and is expected to cover “Crimea, the international situation, the domestic economy and the ruble,” Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov […]

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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 race head on. A new […]

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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. On Tuesday, the National Television […]

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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 his contribution to Russia’s “social […]

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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 greatest project [the Sochi Olympics] […]

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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 liberal Dozhd channel from all […]

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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 February. “We believe that the […]

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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, NTV Plus and VimpelCom, dropped […]

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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 to take over. In case […]

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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 offering online streaming services, and […]

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NEWSLINK: Putin dissolves state news agency, tightens grip on Russia media

File Photo of Little Russian Girl at Laptop Next to Globe

[Putin dissolves state news agency, tightens grip on Russia media – Reuters – Timothy Heritage – December 9 – http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/12/09/us-russia-media-idUSBRE9B80I120131209] Reuters covers Russia President Vladimir Putin’s decision to dissolve RIA Novosti and absorb its operations into new entity called Rossiya Segodnya, with a mission of promoting Russia abroad: President Vladimir Putin tightened his control over Russia’s media on Monday by […]

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Senator McCain invited to speak live on Rossiya 1 television

John McCain file photo

(Interfax – MOSCOW, September 15, 2013) Russian Journalist Vladimir Solovyov has invited U.S. Republican Senator John McCain to speak live in his evening program on Rossiya 1 television. “On behalf of the radio and television holding VGTRK, I invite Senator John McCain to speak live in the Sunday Evening program,” Solovyov wrote in his Twitter blog. Solovyov said later on […]

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TV determines perspective, if not outcome, of mayoral race

Aerial View of Moscow From Beyond Stadium, file photo

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Mark Teeter, special to RBTH – Mark H. Teeter teaches English and Russian-American relations in Moscow. He blogs daily for ‘Moscow TV Tonite’ on Facebook – September 11, 2013) Were you surprised by the results of the Moscow mayor election? The answer for Muscovites may depend on what media they consume. The unexpectedly […]

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Current Moscow TV programming

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

Date: Wed, 4 Sep 2013 Subject: Current Moscow TV programming From: “Mark H. Teeter” in Moscow <markhteeter@gmail.com> FYI: After a nice run with the TV column “TeleMost” for the Moscow News over 2010-11 (archived at http://www.themoscownews.com/col_archive/index_7.html), I began posting daily previews/reviews of selected current Moscow TV programming last year on Facebook, where the response from my modest-sized Friends list has been […]

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Televised Mayoral Debates Go Unnoticed

Aerial View of Moscow From Beyond Stadium, file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – September 6, 2013) Televised debates between the Moscow mayoral candidates did not stir much interest among audiences, with only half a percent of residents watching the most popular round of debates on Aug. 16. Sociologists attributed weak interest to acting Mayor Sergei Sobyanin’s refusal to participate, Kommersant reported. A total of eleven debates have been […]

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Russian Pundits Say Navalny’s Pull Out From Election Debates Is Non-Fatal Error

Alexei Navalny file photo

(RIA Novosti – Moscow, August 18, 2013) The decision of Moscow mayoral candidate Aleksey Navalnyy to not take part in debates on the Moskva Doveriye TV channel and the Moskva FM radio station can be described as a certain mistake, however he can use the time he saves to maximize contacts with voters on subjects that suit him, political analysts […]

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Navalny Won’t Participate in Future Debates

Alexei Navalny file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – August 19, 2013) Opposition blogger Alexei Navalny has announced that he will not participate in the next rounds of mayoral debates, both televised and on the radio. The Navalny campaign criticized the decision by television channel Moskva-Doverie to air the debate at 8 a.m., Interfax reported. Last week Navalny, the RPR-Parnas candidate, participated in three […]

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RIA Novosti: Most Russians Still Trust TV News More Than Internet – Poll

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(RIA Novosti – August 13, 2013) The share of Russians who trust the TV is almost three times greater than of those who regard the internet as a trustworthy source of information, Russian state news agency RIA Novosti reported on 13 August, quoting the latest opinion poll from VTsIOM, the Russian Public Opinion Research Centre. Asked which source they would […]

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TRANSCRIPT: Interview of the President by Jay Leno, The Tonight Show [excerpt re Russia]

File Photo of Vladimir Putin Leaning Towards Barack Hussein Obama With Flags Behind Them

(The White House – Office of the Press Secretary – NBC Studios – Burbank, California – August 7, 2013) For Immediate Release Q    Now, were you surprised that Russia granted Snowden asylum? THE PRESIDENT:  I was disappointed because even though we don’t have an extradition treaty with them, traditionally we have tried to respect if there’s a law-breaker or an […]

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Russians Still Get News From TV But Trust It Much Less – Poll

File Photo of Russian Television Studio

(RIA Novosti – July 8, 2013) Internet still trails far behind television as the main source of news for the people of Russia but their trust in TV reporting has decreased quite significantly in recent years, Russian state news agency RIA Novosti reported on 8 July, quoting the findings of the latest Levada Centre poll. In the poll carried out […]

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NBC Debuts Horror-Reality Show ‘Siberia’ Online

Siberian Natural Scenery, with River, Trees, Hills

(RIA Novosti – WASHINGTON, June 26, 2013) NBC has debuted the first episode of its horror-reality TV show “Siberia” online, TV.com reports. The series, a faux-reality show which is in fact a scripted horror series, features a group of Americans arriving in Russia to shoot a “Survivor”-type program, in which they must survive the harsh Russian winter. Little do the […]

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NTV Yukos Film Fuels Campaign Against Khodorkovsky

Mikhail Khodorkovsky file photo

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – June 25, 2013) The state controlled NTV channel has aired a documentary alleging that the Yukos founders, including Mikhail Khodorkovsky, were involved in the killing of the mayor of Nefteyugansk in western Siberia in 1998. The film is seen by experts as part of a campaign to set the scene for the third criminal case […]

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TRANSCRIPT: [Putin] Visit to Russia Today television channel

Kremlin and St. Basil's

(Kremlin.ru – Moscow, June 11, 2013) Vladimir Putin visited the new Russia Today broadcasting centre and met with the channel’s leadership and correspondents. The President toured the production control room, the sound editing booth, the English, Spanish and Arabic desks, and a visual effects studio. Russia Today is a Russian international multilingual media company, which comprises five 24-hour television channels: […]

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Turkish Turmoil Adds Unpredictability to Putin’s Creeping Coup

Turkey map

(Eurasia Daily Monitor: Volume 10, Issue 109 – Pavel K. Baev – Jamestown Foundation – jamestown.org – June 10, 2013) The explosion of public protests in Istanbul makes a strong but ambivalent impression on the development of the vacillating political crisis in Russia; the state-controlled Russian television channels prefer to give them minimal and unsympathetic coverage, focusing instead on the flooding […]

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Russian Public TV denies canceling programme over Putin divorce jokes

Vladimir Putin and Lydumila Putin file photo

(Interfax – Moscow, June 8, 2013) Russian Public TV is not planning to cancel its Social Network programme, the next episode will air on 10 June. The channel’s press service told Interfax on Saturday (8 June) that the 7 June edition of the programme was not aired for technical reasons. “No-one is closing the programme, it will continue to run. […]

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Larry King (predictably) slated for joining RT

Larry King file photo

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – Ben Aris – May 31, 2013) And so it starts. The articles slating US talk show icon Larry King for agreeing to do a series of shows for the Kremlin-sponsored RT (nee Russia Today) have begun to flow, full of the predictable bile and vitriol. Hey, Larry King: Have You Ever Watched Russia Today? […]

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Game of clones: Why ‘Game of Thrones’ is a lot like Russian politics ­ except not really

Kremlin and St. Basil's

(Moscow News – themoscownews.com – Anna Arutunyan – May 6, 2013) Anna Arutunyan is a correspondent and editor at themoscownews.com When, over the long weekend, I sat down to watch “Game of Thrones,” a fantasy series set in a mythical realm where seven houses ruthlessly vie for supreme power, I was prepared to draw parallels with Russian politics. At first, […]

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Russian liberal TV channel suspends opposition activist’s political talk show

Ksenia Sobchak file photo

(Interfax – April 22, 2013) The format of Russian TV presenter and opposition activist Kseniya Sobchak’s weekly political talk show “Gosdep-3”, aired on Internet and satellite Dozhd TV channel, will be changed, Interfax news agency reported on 22 April, quoting Dozhd managing director Natalya Sindeyeva. “The programme is by no means being closed. We are suspending it in order to […]

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‘Optimistic’ Channel Gets a Sobering Makeover

Kremlin and St. Basil's

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Eradzh Nidoev – February 19, 2013) More than a year after the start of marches against allegedly rigged Duma elections, the burning caldron that was the Russian protest movement cooled to a gentle bubbling, while its participants went back to their usual temperate lives. Such a turn of events poses a problem for the Dozhd […]

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