The Moscow court recognized the activities of Meta as extremist

Yesterday, March 21, 2022, the Tverskoy District Court of Moscow satisfied the claims requirements of the Prosecutor General’s Office and recognized the activities of social networks Instagram and Facebook, owned by Meta Platforms, an extremist, banning them in Russia. The decision of the court entered into force immediately.

Let me remind you that the Prosecutor General’s Office applied to the court with this requirement at the beginning of the last week, after Meta management allowed users of Facebook and Instagram to call for violence against Russians in some countries and the Russian military in the context of the “special operation in Ukraine”. Roskomnadzor and the FSB filed requests with the court with similar claims.

Now that Meta’s activities are officially recognized as extremist, TASS quotes the words of the prosecutor, who assured that the messenger owned by Meta WhatsApp does not cover this.

The representative of the prosecutor’s office also stated that ordinary individuals and legal entities all this will not affect:

The use of Meta products by individuals and entities should not be considered as participation in extremist activities. Persons will not be held liable only for that they use the services of Meta.he said.

At the same time, a lawyer and head of the Agora International Human Rights Group, Pavel Chikov told reporters that, for example, buying ads on Instagram and Facebook can now be seen as financing extremism.

Buying ads on Instagram and Facebook can be regarded as financing of an extremist organization (Article 282.3 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation). Also law enforcements can draw up a protocol to any site or store that has links to these social networks, or to a person who distributes business cards with contacts on Instagram and Facebook: this is a public demonstration symbols of an extremist organization (Article 20.3 of the Code of Administrative Offenses of the Russian Federation).explained Chikov.

Also in his Telegram channel, he writes that “ownership of Meta shares gives the right to participation in the management of the company, including in the meeting of shareholders <…> Participation in activity of an extremist organization is also a crime (Part 2 article 282.2 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation).

This point of view is shared by another lawyer, head of Yusufov Group Asad Yusufov:

Previously, we have always recognized as extremist organizations precisely conductors of a certain ideology, and not a platform where they are allowed to post such comments. But in any case, when registering, for example on Facebook, all users sign a custom agreement, where all responsibility for their actions rests with the user. Any paid advertising can be interpreted as financing of an extremist organization. So users can’t now make no payments for advertising, because otherwise any Russian customer can be recognized as an extremist.

Yusufov also believes that the next step after recognizing the activities Instagram and Facebook may become extremist entering into administrative Code of the Russian Federation of the relevant changes, which will provide for responsibility for users who will be recognized as accomplices.

If, say, any post is published that supports these extremist actions, and a person will put likes under it, then it is quite likely that if this person is discovered, then measures can be applied to him, as both criminal and administrative responsibility. We do not yet have such a practice, but, I think, after this court decision will be quickly adopted amendments to the Code of Administrative offenses.he added.
It seems that Russia lives in the world of George Orruel’s novel “1984”. But it is not an illusion, in Russia there is a dictatorship that easily consolidates and not such idiocy legislation to deprive users of access to objective information and justify aggression against a neighboring country. For example, we already talked about the fact that Instagram is officially blocked in Russia.

Let me remind you that we also wrote that Backbone provider Cogent disconnects Russian companies.

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Daniel Zimmermann

Daniel Zimmermann has been writing on security and malware subjects for many years and has been working in the security industry for over 10 years. Daniel was educated at the Saarland University in Saarbrücken, Germany and currently lives in New York.

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