The Russian Government has threatened to block access to the link-sharing website Reddit, nationwide, unless it deletes a thread that gives advice on how to grow marijuana. So it seems Russia has restricted the access to several Reddit pages, as a result of controversy stirred by the pages promoting ways to cultivate banned substances, such as marijuana or hallucinogenic mushrooms.
Reddit is widely known as an online bulletin board system, where community members can submit posts involving text, photos and direct links. In Russia, it has been so far the most popular media outlet.
This potential warning follows similar threats made against Youtube, and its recent blocking of PirateBay.
Roskomnadzor, Russia’s Federeal Service for the Supervision of Communication, Information Technology and Mass Media, reported it had asked Reddit to remove the post, but did not yet receive a reply. The agency posted a “Wanted” poster to go with the message, as it attempts to resolve the issue. Moreover, the Russian media watchdog threatened to block the entire website if the reply would not be given promptly.
The thread in question was titled “Minimal and Reliable Methods for Growing Psilocybe [Mushrooms]”.
However, the pages had been posted two years ago, concerning the growth of psilocybin mushrooms. These hallucinogenic mushrooms (or “magic mushrooms”) are taken as psychedelic drugs.
Moreover, Roskomnadzor said that the not-yet-to-come-response strategy of Reddit would be of no excuse to losing its entire fandom in Russia. The media watchdog asked everyone with ties to Reddit’s administration staff to inform them about Russia’s position and actions.
Afterwards, in a later message, Roskomnadzor thanked the people who got in touch with Reddit for their help in guaranteeing the pages could no longer be seen and accessed in Russia.
In an online post, the agency wrote a contemptuous message aimed at Reddit, saying its admins were “too relaxed” during the month of August.
Reddit is not the only “victim” of the Russian media-control agency, as Google, Facebook and Twitter, for instance, also received threats of nationwide banning, as a consequence of not complying to the country’s laws of providing data.
In 2014 Russia issued a law that would restrict bloggers and would force those with more than 3,000 followers to register with local authorities.
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