Russia aims to ban Instagram and called Meta an extremist organization. It happened due to Meta’s change in policy to allow hate speech posts against Russia after she attacked Ukraine.
Meta prides in freedom of speech and cracks down on anything that violates their code of conduct. It includes hate speech posts that incite violence, etc., on the platform.
However, in the light of recent events, they’ve lifted the “ban” to allow users to call the death of the Russian armed forces.
The Prosecutor General’s Office in Russia said:
“In accordance with the Federal Law ‘On Countering Extremist Activity,’ the Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation sent an application to the court to recognize Meta Platforms Inc. as an extremist organization and ban its activities in the territory of the Russian Federation.”
The office further said that the WhatsApp service wouldn’t be affected since it’s a means of communication and not posting information.
At the time of writing this, Russia has already banned Facebook in the country. But they postponed the decision to ban Instagram and WhatsApp currently. Due to their popularity, especially among young people.
Now, the reports suggest, Meta is already looking to back out of their recent policy change decision. That calls for violence against the Russian military.
Meta has this to say:
“In light of the ongoing invasion of Ukraine, we made a temporary exception for those affected by war, to express sentiments toward invading armed forces such as ‘death to the Russian invaders.”
Any hate speech, Meta reassured they would remove directed at Russians from their platform. They mean they’ve allowed the change for the territories caught up in the conflict. And that it’s specific to the invasion and not Russia in general.
But it’s allowed praise for the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion that admits to recruiting neo-Nazis and arming them to fight against Russia.
Russians have resorted to VPN services to bypass restrictions in their region. The rate at which Russians have downloaded VPN apps is astounding! Estimates place it between 16k – 700k, daily, since February 24th.