China has their own social media instead of Facebook, so why not Russia too? While the Chinese employ thousands of censors to keep an eye on Sina, Weibo, the Russian government has a different plan altogether. They are going to create their own social network for Russians to share content and speak out online according to The Guardian.
The newly announcement idea could be a response to the increased use of social media by anti government protestors and a number of uprisings have been organized since President Vladimir Putin announced he would run for another term late last year.
Facebook, Twitter, and Russia-based VK (formerly VKontakte) and Odnoklassniki have been the favored networks of Russian protestors.
But unlike the Chinese, Russian internet users have a much more free experience. So the plan for Russia, is to attract users from the already existing platforms so it could potentially censor content it deems unsavory and steer the digital conversation away from politically sensitive topics. Good luck with that.
Their proposed network will face a lot of challenges, not mentioning the competition from already popular networks they have locally. VK has about 118 million, Odnoklassniki claims 45 million, Twitter has about five million and Facebook’s Russian user base is growing at a rate of almost 375%.
Just who would join a government made social network?