On Wednesday, the Federal Communications, Information Technology, and Mass Communications Oversight Service, also known as Roskomnadzor, announced that it is slowing down the speed of Twitter.
According to the communications watchdog, it was taking measures that could end up blocking the service completely if Twitter refuses to respond, to keep Russia’s citizens safe.
In a statement by Roskomnadzor, speeds will be reduced on all mobile devices and 50% of non-mobile devices, such as computers, the regulator cited 2,569 cases of users inciting minors to commit suicide, 450 cases of child pornography and 149 cases of information on drug use.
The watchdog said it asked Twitter to remove links and publications more than 28,000 times between 2017 and March 2021. This said other social networks had been more co-operative than Twitter on removing content that encourages minors to commit suicide.
According to CNBC, Matt Navara – a social media consultant, told that the “threat of restricting, blocking or banning social media platforms appears to be a growing trend for countries notorious for harsher, less democratic regimes.”
A law was passed for the development of a “sovereign internet” in 2019, aimed at isolating Russia from the worldwide web, a move activists fear will constrict government control of cyberspace. Websites such as video platform Dailymotion and professional networking website LinkedIn has already been banned in Russia because they refused to cooperate with the authorities.