Google blocked an ad with an appeal to go to a rally against raising the retirement age on September 9. This was reported by the head of the headquarters of the politician Alexei Navalny Leonid Volkov. The advertisement was distributed on YouTube video hosting (owned by Google). Google explained the blocking in that advertisers must act in accordance with local laws. Roskomnadzor said that it can not yet confirm the information about the blocking of the commercial.
According to Volkov, the advertisement was blocked at midnight. "We believe that this is Google's response to the letter of the Central Election Commission - that is, they believe that our videos should be blocked due to a" day of silence ". At the same time, the blocking of advertising does not depend on whether elections are held in the region or not, as well as whether a rally in the region is agreed upon (for example, in Cheboksary the rally is coordinated and there is no election, nevertheless, Google closed our advertising campaign there) "- wrote Volkov in social networks.
According to Volkov, the video with an appeal to go to the rally on September 9 does not violate the "day of silence" (on the eve of the elections the dissemination of any agitation is prohibited), and the letter of the Central Election Commission is not a legal document.
Advertisers must act in accordance with local legislation and Google's advertising policies, the company's press service told Interfax. "We are considering all reasonable appeals from state bodies," the Google representative added.
Roskomnadzor monitors Google's actions, the assessment will be given after the elections, the press service of the agency told Interfax. The head of Roskomnadzor Alexander Zharov told the agency that he does not yet have confirmation of the information about the blocking of the commercial about the rally on September 9. "On the floor, we do not believe anyone. Let's check this information, "Zharov said.
Earlier, several Russian agencies sent Google warnings about the inadmissibility of violation of Russian legislation on elections. In addition to the Central Election Commission, Google's warnings were made by the Prosecutor General's Office, FAS and Roskomnadzor. The CEC notified Google that interference of foreign companies in the electoral process in any form is not allowed and will be regarded as a violation of the law of Russia and interference in the elections. The claims were related to the advertisement of the video of Navalny, in which he calls to go to rallies against raising the retirement age on September 9.
In early August, Navalny announced his desire to hold an all-Russian protest action against the pension reform on a single voting day on September 9. In Moscow and several other cities, the event was not coordinated with the authorities. The most Navalny at the rally will not be: he is under administrative arrest for the action "Strike of voters" on January 28.
The headquarters of Navalny regularly buys advertising on YouTube and in Instagram, makes paid promo rallies of protest events, wrote to himself at Facebook Leonid Volkov: "We did this before all mass rallies starting from March 26, 2017, we do it before 9 September and will do it farther". This is the only channel of "mass information that we have," Volkov added. In his opinion, the Central Election Committee is lying, saying that rallies can not be held on election day.