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Kevin Rothrock

Native son of the San Francisco Bay Area. Masters from UC Berkeley in Soviet History. Between 2009 and 2011, I worked with Leon Aron in Washington, DC, at the American Enterprise Institute. Since 2010, I've blogged at ‘A Good Treaty.’ Read my tweets (there are thousands) at @KevinRothrock and @RuNetMemes. Now also a producer of Meduza‘s English-language edition.

Email Kevin Rothrock

Latest posts by Kevin Rothrock

24 August 2015

Did Russia's Biggest Search Engine Censor Itself to Protect Putin's Spokesman?

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

Vladimir Putin's spokesman is back in the news, after Internet users discovered this weekend that Yandex, the country’s most popular search engine, might be censoring itself to protect him.

22 August 2015

Did Wikipedia Just Outsmart Russia's Internet Blacklist?

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

Wikipedia is trying something new in the fight against Russian censorship, and it might actually work.

19 August 2015

How One News Website Is Taking On Russia's Attorney General (and Losing)

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

How one small oppositionist news website has gobbled up almost half the Russian Attorney General's online censorship efforts.

17 August 2015

Russian Censors Falsify Evidence Against Newspaper to Uphold Ban on Political Coverage

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

Last weekend, in an appeals case by one newspaper against the government, state censors finally revealed specifically why they banned several news stories last year about a protest in Siberia.

11 August 2015

Eat Your Heart Out, Boston Tea Party. This Is How Russia Destroys Food.

RuNet Echo

RuNet Echo collects some of the most poignant jokes and statements from Russian-language Twitter about Russia's new war on banned Western food imports.

2 August 2015

Russia's Mustachioed Corruption

RuNet Echo

A day after Putin's press secretary wed, Russia’s most famous anti-corruption activist has published evidence that Dmitry Peskov wears a wristwatch worth at least $620,000.

23 July 2015

Russia Says Twitter Doesn’t Need to Comply With Its New Data-Localization Law

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

State officials have announced that Twitter can ignore a new law coming into force that will require online services to store all Russian user data on servers located inside Russia.

20 July 2015

An Open Letter to Russia's Silent National TV Networks

RuNet Echo

Almost two dozen soldiers died on July 13, when part of a military barracks in Omsk collapsed. Russian national television has not been eager to cover the tragedy.

17 July 2015

Psychologist Leaves St. Petersburg University After Pressure from Anti-LGBT Group

RuNet Echo

The St. Petersburg State Pediatric Medical University has dissolved a sex-change medical board, and apparently fired Dmitry Isaev, the doctor who headed the commission, following an anti-LGBT campaign.

6 July 2015

Fines for Violating Russia’s ‘Right to Be Forgotten’ Might Not Be So Stiff, After All

RuNet Echo

Lawmakers suggest that fines will likely be levied only after a search engine refuses to comply with a court order to delete links under the “right to be forgotten” protocol.

3 July 2015

Here's How Russia's New ‘Right to Be Forgotten’ Compares to Europe's

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

RuNet Echo looks at new Russian legislation that would introduce a "right to be forgotten" online, comparing it to the landmark European Court decision last year.

28 June 2015

How Russia’s Biggest Homophobe Joined an LGBT Social Community

RuNet Echo

One of Russia's most popular satirical online communities has used the recent US Supreme Court ruling on same-sex marriage to troll St. Petersburg's most infamous homophobic politician.

25 June 2015

Russia Bans the Internet Archive's ‘Wayback Machine’

RuNet EchoGlobal Voices Advocacy

The Russian government has blocked the Internet Archive, the San-Francisco-based website that provides the popular Wayback Machine, which allows users to view archived webpages.

21 June 2015

A Picture Worth a Thousand Russian Expletives

RuNet Echo

Last week, eight of the most prominent journalists working in Russia posed for a controversial group photo with the former leader of Donetsk's separatists. Here's what happened.

18 June 2015

Smokey the Bear, Meet Your Russian Cousin and Eat Your Heart Out

RuNet Echo

A national park on the coast of Kamchatka has hired a popular online cartoonist to illustrate a series of public service announcements intended educate visitors about safety around bears.

17 June 2015

Is the Kremlin Watering Down Russia's ‘Right to Be Forgotten’?

RuNet Echo

Kremlin officials and Yandex reportedly reached a compromise that will weaken the next draft of legislation designed to introduce to the RuNet a "right to be forgotten."

16 June 2015

How the Kremlin Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Online News Aggregation

RuNet Echo

According to a new study, the Kremlin appears to have mastered several ways to fool Yandex.News into promoting government-planted stories to an audience that surpassed 23 million people in April.

11 June 2015

Samsung Allegedly Agrees to Comply with Russia's Data-Localization Law

RuNet Echo

Speculation that Samsung will bow to Russia’s new data-localization demands comes amid rumors that other prominent tech companies have agreed to move users' data to servers in Russia.

9 June 2015

Facebook Responds to ‘Stop Political Blocking’ Petition by Russians and Ukrainians

RuNet Echo

In a statement posted to Change.org on June 8, Thomas Kristensen, Facebook’s director of policy for Eastern Europe and Russia, explained that the social network stands by its moderation policies

6 June 2015

Russian Activist Dons Stilettos and Dog Collar to Protest ‘Sadists’ Law’

RuNet Echo

Submitted to the Duma in late May, the legislation would expand the circumstances under which guards can use force when confronting anything from a prison break to a disobedient prisoner

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