A Russian court has fined U.S. social-media giant Facebook and messaging app Telegram again for failing to delete content Moscow deems illegal.
The Magistrates Court in the Taganka district said on July 22 it had fined Facebook 6 million rubles ($81,000) and Telegram 11 million rubles ($149,000) on two protocols filed by Russia’s communications watchdog, Roskomnadzor.
Moscow claims it is trying to rein in Western tech giants and bolster what it calls its Internet “sovereignty,” though many critics say the authorities are trying to quell dissent with parliamentary elections looming in September and the ruling United Russia party’s popularity slumping.
Several social-media giants have been embroiled in a broad dispute with authorities who say posts on their sites, among other things, encouraged minors to join unsanctioned protests in January, when people across the country took to the streets to support opposition politician and Kremlin critic Aleksei Navalny after he was detained on what he calls trumped-up charges.
Source – Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty