Researcher Marielle Wijermars to give lecture at University of Tromsø (Norway)

Russian Media Lab researcher Marielle Wijermars will give a lecture on internet freedom in Russia at the University of Tromsø on 17 November. The talk is part of the research seminar series hosted by the research group “Russian Space: Concepts, Practices, Representations”.

Can Russia control the Runet? Online freedom of speech and the 2018 presidential elections 

Over the course of the past five years, the Russian government has dramatically expanded its control over the internet. This acceleration in developing internet governance and implementing various mechanisms of direct and indirect online censorship occurred largely in response to the protest movement of 2011-2012, which demonstrated the mobilizational potential of online and social media.

With the 2018 presidential elections approaching, we see a renewed intensification of efforts to control the Runet. The talk provides an overview of the most recent developments in how the Russian government seeks to influence and control online discourses, e.g. through restricting online privacy. Based on the example of Aleksei Navalny’s current anti-corruption campaign, attention is drawn to the many paradoxes that continue to exist when we speak of internet control in Russia: from the influence of multinational technology companies such as Facebook and Google, to Russia’s adoption of open government principles and aspirations in the sphere of “digital economy”.  

Details: Friday 17 November, 10:15 – 12:00. University of Tromsø, SVHUM E0103

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