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Russia Blocks Access to Popular Porn Sites

As alternative to streaming porn, country’s media watchdog suggests meeting real people.

15 September 2016

Russia’s media watchdog yesterday ordered access to two of the world’s biggest adult sites blocked, taking advantage of its sweeping powers to sweep the internet of undesirable material.


Pornhub and YouPorn were added to the agency’s blacklist of banned sites. The decision obligates internet providers to immediately block access to the sites.


A year ago the agency blacklisted the Russian-language version of Pornhub and 10 other pornography sites on the basis of a court ruling that the sites violated child protection laws and had illegally produced and distributed pornography, The Moscow Times reports.


According to Russian law, consumption of pornography is allowed though the production of it is not.


The illegal production, distribution, and “public demonstration” of pornography is punishable by a 2- to 6-year prison term, according to Roskomnadzor’s website.


A court will rule later on whether to let stand the latest porn site blocks.


After the court ruling last year, Meduza wrote, “It remains unclear why the court targeted these specific sites, and not the millions of other porn repositories available online.”


  • Pornhub and YouPorn both belong to MindGeek, based in Luxembourg but run mostly from Montreal, Canada’s Financial Post writes. Pornhub is reportedly the world’s most popular adult website and the 60th most visited site on the internet.


  • After the Russian version of Pornhub was blocked last year, one Twitter user asked Roskomnadzor to suggest an alternative, to which the watchdog replied, “try meeting someone in real life.”


  • This is not the first ban in Russia on a website accused of distributing illegal information. Last year a block was ordered for sections of the social news portal Reddit with instructions on how to grow hallucinogenic mushrooms.
Compiled by Aliautsina Kuzmiankova
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