Google forwarded to the team of politician Alexei Navalny a message from Roskomnadzor, in which he notified about the blocking of two documents with lists of candidates for Smart Voting, the team reported on Telegram. A copy of the letter from Google published by her states that the company may block documents.
“The specified URL has been added to the list of prohibited materials … If you do not remove the specified materials, Google will be forced to block access to them,” the letter says.
At the time of publication, both addresses for documents were not entered in the register of Roskomnadzor, according to the official service of the department. Roskomnadzor sent two requests to the company to delete documents on docs.google.com on September 17, according to Google reports on the Lumen website (database of requests for the removal of materials).
After the blocking of the Smart Voting site, Alexey Navalny's team published the lists of candidates on the Google Docs platform, which is usually used for co-editing documents. The day before Roskomnadzor's request, Google Docs users reported problems with the site when accessing through providers in the Russian Federation. After that, Roskomnadzor said that the services are available from the Russian Federation, and the media should check the sources of messages and “the goals they pursue.”
The day before, by the first day of voting in the elections in Russia, Apple and Google removed the Navalny app from their stores, which had the opportunity to watch the Smart Vote candidates. On the night of September 18, the project's bot in Telegram was blocked. Shortly before this, the founder of the messenger, Pavel Durov, said that the messenger would restrict “the functioning of bots associated with election campaigning.” Mr. Durov said that blocking the Navalny application by Apple and Google set a dangerous precedent, but at the same time explained Telegram's decision to defend the “days of silence.”
On the pressure of the Russian authorities on digital platforms – in the material of “Kommersant” “Apple and Google have come to the” red line “.”