How Russian citizens are losing access to more information about what is going on
Russian citizens are being pushed further into the dark. The effects of the Russian invasion of Ukraine are having digital effects. As the conflict persists, the Russian government has continued to restrict its citizen’s access to information.
As NPR reports, Russia blocked Facebook after the company stopped allowing media outlets backed by the country to display content for E.U. members and Brittan. Nick Clegg, the President of Global Affairs at Facebooks’ parent company Meta, tweeted that Facebook would be working to bring service back to Russia so that Russians can continue to access a safe place to communicate.
Russians cannot normally access Facebook and the country is facing limited functions with other media platforms including Twitter and Tik Tok. Some can still access these sites through VPNs, but not everyone understands these networks. As information sources dwindle and become hindered it will be increasingly difficult for the Russian people to gather facts for themselves, fully understand the conflict, and form their own opinions on it. As The New York Times reports Russia has also created a law that punishes people publishing anything about the Ukraine invasion deemed as misinformation with 15 years in prison. Russians are being subjected to more and more restrictions and they face harsh consequences for speaking out.
Facebook and other companies must work quickly to restore services so that Russian citizens aren’t kept from alternative views and information sources on what their government is doing. If they cannot get information about what is actually happening, there will be fewer and fewer Russians who understand enough about the War to stand against what their country is doing in Ukraine. If people are limited and kept from the truth of their governments’ actions, tyranny will ensue and persist.