Meta said it bars Russian state media from running ads or monetizing on its platform anywhere in the world, the social media giant’s parent company Facebook said Friday.
“We also continue to apply labels to other Russian state media,” its head of security policy, Nathaniel Gleicher, said on Twitter.
“These changes have already started to roll out and will continue throughout the weekend.
“We now prohibit Russian state media from serving ads or monetizing on our platform anywhere in the world,” he added.
Moscow accused Facebook of censoring Russian media on Friday and said it would partially restrict access to the social media platform, the latest in a series of measures against US social media giants announced a day later. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Russia has been trying for years to exert tighter control over the internet and Big Tech, which critics say threatens the freedom of individuals and businesses, and is part of a broader crackdown on outspoken opponents of the Kremlin.
Meta “orders to stop independent fact-checking”
Facebook has been a key platform for expressing dissent in Russia, and the move to limit it also comes as police crack down on anti-war street protests in cities across the country.
Russia’s communications regulator said Facebook ignored its demands to lift restrictions on four Russian media outlets on its platform – the RIA news agency, the Defense Ministry’s Zvezda TV and the gazeta.ru and lenta.ru.
Meta’s head of global affairs, Nick Clegg, said in a statement on Twitter: “Yesterday, Russian authorities ordered us to end independent fact-checking and labeling of content posted on Facebook by four media outlets. Russian state authorities. We refused. As a result, they announced that they would restrict the use of our services.”
Meta, which has long been under pressure to tackle misinformation, partners with outside fact-checkers, including Reuters, who assess the veracity of certain content. Meta says that content rated false, modified, or partially false is shown to fewer users.
Clegg said “ordinary Russians” use Meta’s apps to “express themselves and organize for action” and the company wants them to continue to do so.
Facebook, YouTube and others have a duty to ensure their social media platforms are not misused by Russia and Russia-related entities, US Senator Mark Warner says in letter to CEOs companies.
Each company has “a clear responsibility to ensure that your products are not used to facilitate human rights abuses, undermine humanitarian and emergency service responses, or advance harmful misinformation,” it said. -he declares.
Alphabet Inc’s Google said it removed hundreds of YouTube channels and thousands of videos in the past few days for violating its policies and continues to research and disrupt misinformation campaigns and piracy. Google is also weighing what new sanctions and export controls could mean for the company, spokeswoman Ivy Choi said.
Crackdown on “false news” against the media in Russia
It was not immediately clear what Russia’s restrictions on Facebook would entail.
Last year, Moscow slowed the speed of Twitter in a punitive move.
“In accordance with the decision of the Attorney General’s Office, from February 25, partial access restrictions are imposed by Roskomnadzor on the social network Facebook,” the regulator, Roskomnadzor, said in a statement.
Moscow has also increased pressure on domestic media, threatening to block reports containing what it describes as “false information” about its military operation in Ukraine, where Russian missiles pounded Kiev and families huddled in shelters.
Meta has already irritated the Russian authorities. Moscow regularly imposes small fines on the company for what it says is a failure to remove illegal content quickly enough.
In December, it imposed a much larger fine of 2 billion rubles (21 million euros) for what it described as a repeated failure to remove content. It also fined Google, Twitter and TikTok.