"Russia for Russians," deemed an extremist propaganda video, banned by Russian court ruling
YouTube just got the censorship treatment again.
This time around, a Russian court in the city of Komsomolsk-on-Amur has ordered the local ISP to block access to YouTube for hosting a video called "Russia for Russians," determined by the court to be extremist propaganda.
Also banned are four other Web sites--the Internet Archive and three online libraries, Lib.rus.ec, Thelib.ru and Zhurnal.ru--found to be providing excerpts of Adolf Hitler's book Mein Kampf.
RA RTS Rosnet, the Internet service provider involved, has appealed the ruling. Well aware of the free speech implications of such a case, Rosnet owner Aleksandr Ermakov spoke out fervently agains the court's decision:
All of mankind is using this website. And providers like ours do not violate Russian law. But we are still being forced to close the website so that our users can not log on and watch the videos. This is absurd! According to this logic, we have to demolish all buildings that have swastikas on the walls. Or when two people are discussing a bomb over the phone, we have to take away the phones from all people across Russia.
An eternal source of controversy around the world, YouTube is no stranger to censorship.
Brazil, the People's Republic of China, Indonesia, Iran, Morocco, Pakistan, Tunisia, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Thailand, and the United Arab Emirates have all blocked some or all of YouTube content at some point. Mainland China, Iran, Libya, Tunisia, Turkey, and Turkmenistan in particular have managed to maintain those bans. Indeed, even in the US and UK, videos have been axed from the site for including content copyrighted by powerful entertainment companies like UMG, WMG, and Viacom.