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Russian Media Watchdog Reports Increase in Illegal Online Content

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Russia’s media watchdog Roskomnadzor received more than 118,000 reports of illegal online content this year, the agency said Wednesday.

In the first six months of 2017, the watchdog received roughly 39,000 complaints related to drugs and drug use and a similar number of notifications flagging illegal games online.

Other categories included child pornography, with roughly 21,000 complaints and the “promotion of suicide,” with 19,000 complaints.

In total, roughly 52,000 links were blocked by the agency.

Roskomnadzor registered an increase in complaints in almost all categories, especially regarding the “promotion of suicide," which increased by 285 percent.

In recent years, the Russian authorities have tightened control over the internet.

Roskomnadzor has blacklisted forums and websites dedicated to providing help for those contemplating self-harm and LGBT support websites. In 2015 it blocked access to a Wikipedia article on charas — a form of hashish.

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