Russia Threatened to Slow Down Speed of Google Over ‘Unlawful Content’

Google Could Be Fined with More Than $50,000 Over the Dispute with Russian Media Regulator Roskomnadzor

The media watchdog for Russia has recently given a threat regarding slowing down the speed of Google if the firm fails to remove the unlawful content present on their sites. Roskomnadzor has provided Google a time period of 24 hours for the removal of videos that, according to them, are related to extremism, violent activities, and drugs.

Google, who is the owner of YouTube, could possibly be fined due to the placement of unlawful content from 800,000 to 4 million roubles (equivalent to $10,881 and $53,701) by the Russian service providers.

According to the Russian media watchdog Roskomnadzor said in a statement that they have previously sent more than 26,000 warning notices to the Google office for the deletion of videos that contains subject matter that was deemed by them as unlawful content.

The Roskomnadzor has also accused the tech giant of restriction is the access of YouTube throughout the region of Russia and their media outlets, including Sputnik and RT, and is supporting unlawful content, including illegitimate protest activities.

Internet stream of traffic

If Google is unable to cooperate in the given time duration for the removal of unlawful content on their webpages, the Russian watchdog has stated that they would slow down the speed of internet for the Russian users that are trying to access Google in the region, which could consequently cause damages to Google.

The state has previously used these powers to their advantage in the month of March this year, making it most likely that they would do this again if required. Roskomnadzor has restricted access for Twitter users in Russia after the watchdog has said that the social media platform was unable to comply with their demands for the removal of around 3,000 posts concerning banned content across the country.

The Russian internet service-providing organization has the ability to either limit and even block the flow of data to all the websites being accessed throughout the country, including being able to slow down the speed for connecting to certain web pages.

Unlawful content on YouTube

The tech firm Google is currently trying to sue the Russian watchdog for all media content Roskomnadzor over the demands made by them for the removal of material which is deemed as inappropriate and unlawful content, and the case is currently at trial in court.

The case for the unlawful content by Google involves twelve of the videos which have been posted on YouTube that have shown and encourages minor children to join in the unsanctioned public demonstration, which occurred in the month of January and were held in support for the jailed critic of Kremlin Alexei Navalny.

Alexei Navalny has more than 6.5 million subscribers on his account on YouTube and has been regularly posting video content on the social platform, voicing his opposition to the Russian government and the President of the country Vladimir Putin.

The hearing for this case by Google suing Roskomnadzor as they threatened the firm over the posting of unlawful content on their platform has been scheduled to occur on July 14.

Slowing down of Twitter

The Russian watchdog has previously threatened the social media network Twitter as they could slow down its speed for their Russian users after Roskomnadzor accused the social media firm of failing to remove more than 3,000 tweets posted that are in relation to unlawful content, including pornography, drugs, and suicide.

According to Roskomnadzor, this move over unlawful content of social media platforms is being made to protect the citizens residing across the country of Russia.

The Twitter platform is widely used by the opponents of the Kremlin, and according to the Russian users, they have been facing difficulty during access to various videos and photo content on the website. The tech firm has said that they have become deeply concerned regarding the decision made by the Russian media regulatory authority over the unlawful content as considered by them.

The officials of the media regulators have said that the disruption, which has also affected various other Russian webpages including that of the Kremlin, had been completely unrelated to the recent actions taken by them against Twitter for posting unlawful content and actually involves the issues of technical nature at the state internet providing authority of Russia Rostelecom, as it had also been affected at the same time.

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