As the government pushes down on what people and media outlets can say about Russia’s war in Ukraine, Netflix and TikTok have banned most of their services in Russia.
Netflix did not give an explanation for the change on Sunday, other than to say it was due to “circumstances on the ground.” The corporation had previously stated that it will not broadcast Russian state television networks.
Russian users of TikTok’s popular social media app will no longer be able to publish new videos or livestreams, and they will also be unable to see films shared from across the world, according to the company.
According to TikTok spokesperson Hilary McQuaide, the app in Russia is now in “view-only” mode, which means users will be unable to post or view new videos or livestreams. They may still watch older videos, but not ones from outside the country, according to her.
Some protestors in Moscow, Saint Petersburg, and other Russian cities who took to the streets to denounce the invasion of Ukraine used social media platforms to spread their message.
Internet-based service and app providers have been hesitant to take moves that could deprive Russian citizens access social media and other information sources.
On Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin stepped up his campaign on media outlets and individuals who do not support the Kremlin’s position on the conflict, barring Facebook and Twitter.
The new “fake news” legislation, which was rapidly approved by both houses of parliament and signed by Putin, mandates prison penalties of up to 15 years for anybody who share material that contradicts the Russian government’s war narrative.Several news organisations have also announced that they will take a break from reporting inside Russia to assess the situation.