Russia Poised to Slap Social Media Giants with Almost $ 1 Million in Fines for Refusing to Delete Illegal Content

Russian court is poised to slap three social media giants, Facebook, Telegram and Twitter with fresh bout of fines amounting to almost $1 million, for refusing to delete prohibited content, Russian media report.

They are accused of ‘failure to delete information by the information resource’ under the law on information technology and information protection, that envisages a fine of up to eight million rubles as maximum sanction for this offense.

Russia’s media watchdog Roskomnadzor has been drawing up administrative protocols in relation to social networks and instant messengers that have not removed posts calling for unauthorized political actions in the country since February.

After receiving five protocols against Facebook, two protocols against Twitter and two protocols in relation to Telegram drawn up under Part 4, Article 13.41 of the Code of Administrative Offenses of the Russian Federation, Moscow’s Tagansky district court scheduled hearings on September 14.

All three companies already face additional fines in Russia for the same violations-  $549,231 for FB and $219,688 for Twitter and Telegram each $200K-  and have not been eager to pay while Facebook tried to appeal it to no avail, so on total in 2021 so far, received $672,800 in court fines in Russia.

Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp messaging service has been fined separately last month by the Russian authorities for failing to process Russian users’ private data within the country only.

When it comes to regulation of social media, Russian authorities has been increasingly watchful issuing many fines for a number of content violations since the beginning of 2021, while Russian President Vladimir Putin accused tech firms of being led only by their own best interests.

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