Don’t Enable Russia’s Censorship

Target: Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube, Inc.

Goal: Keep YouTube content available in Russia.

As part of efforts to control the narrative about its invasion of Ukraine and control what its people see, Russia has implemented some of the strictest censorship ever witnessed. Independent news outlets have been shuttered. Citizens are threatened with imprisonment for speaking out, and influential social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram have been banned. Although much of the Russian population is cut off from the rest of the world, funnels of truth remain. Activists have gotten creative in getting real information to the populace, utilizing methods from hacks to text messages. One especially important tool still remains standing: YouTube.

While other forms of social media have fallen in Russia, YouTube has been left untouched largely because of its enormous popularity with the Russian people. Its audience within the country far outsizes any other social media outlet, and the theory goes that while Russians may accept being cut off from these other platforms, they could mount strong protests if they lost YouTube. The Russian government has also traditionally leveraged the platform for its own propaganda purposes, which has led some to call on the conglomerate to restrict its access in Russia.

This move, however, would also take away one of the most effective tools for opposition from within and from outside of Russia. Sign the petition below to urge YouTube to keep its channels open for all.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Ms. Wojcicki,

In Russia’s increasingly escalatory actions against media of all forms, YouTube has been spared. As such, this company is able to stand as one of the only sources of truth and opposition regarding the Ukraine invasion. In a thankful departure from the norm, a social media outlet has become a harbinger of facts rather than disinformation.

The worries about disinformation have compelled critics to encourage a ban on YouTube distribution in Russia. The recent actions the company took in restricting Russian state-owned media accounts will help ease some of these concerns, however. A larger ban would only hurt the cause of individuals and groups trying to reach a deeply censored population.

If the Russian people lose one of their last connections to the rest of the world, please do not let the severance happen by your own hands.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Adam Fejes


2 Comments

  1. Lisa Allis says:

    What about the rampant censorship in the U.S.A.? Why don’t you make a petition to stop that? What a bunch of hypocrits! Fix your problems at home before you go out attacking the neighbors like the Karens that you are! Yes, you are KARENS! Wake up!

  2. HEY FACEBOOK, TWITTER AND INSTAGRAM, HOW DOES IT FEEL TO BE CENSORED? HAHAHAHAHA!!!!! KARMA!!!!!!

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