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UK Broadcasting Regulator Could Move To BAN RT News After Russia’s Ukraine Invasion

UK Culture Secretary has called for total ban on RT, claiming it is “part of Russia’s global disinformation campaign”

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RT News, otherwise known as Russia Today, is facing an outright ban from broadcasting in Britain and potentially the rest of the world following Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.

Censorship of RT has long been in the works and was being discussed prior to the escalation of tensions, with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries asking British regulator Ofcom to consider banning RT outright.

Dorries charged that “RT is demonstrably part of Russia’s global disinformation campaign, as its own editor-in-chief has made clear in the past, who has called the network an ‘information weapon’ of the Russian state.”

Ofcom responded by stating “We are expediting complaints in this area as a matter of urgency and we will not hesitate to take swift action where necessary.”

The statement further noted “It is acceptable for broadcasters to present issues from a particular perspective provided that alternative views and opinions are also represented,” adding “It would not be acceptable for any of our licensees to broadcast one-sided propaganda.”

RT’s deputy editor-in-chief and head of communications, Anna Belkina responded to attempts to shut down RT, saying “Even in the face of undue political pressure, [Ofcom] has continuously found RT to be in line with other UK broadcasters, without a single breach of broadcasting code to be found in the last four years – not something that can be said about many other channels in the country.”

Earlier this week, “opposition” Labour leader Keir Starmer called for a total ban on RT in the UK and the rest of the world calling the network a key part of “Putin’s campaign of misinformation.”

“Russia Today should be prevented from broadcasting its propaganda around the world,” Starmer proclaimed.

Boris Johnson responded to the issue in parliament, noting “We live in a country that believes in free speech, and I think it’s important that we should leave it up to Ofcom rather than to politicians to decide which media organisations to ban – that’s what Russia does.”

Other political figures in the UK have slammed the labelling of RT as Russian propaganda. Former British diplomat Peter Ford called the censorship efforts “appalling,” charging the “The [British] government demands one narrative, not just on Ukraine, but all international affairs,” further accusing British media of being “totally one-sided” on Ukraine coverage.

The former ambassador also claimed the government is “pretending to pass the buck to Ofcom,” asserting that the regulator is a “creature of the British state, staffed by figures of the British state.” 

RT has been targeted for censorship ever since it began broadcasting in Britain, and along with another state funded network, Sputnik News, was banned from attending a global conference on media freedom in London in 2019 because of their “active role in spreading disinformation” according to the UK foreign office.

Sputnik News took the decision to shut down its British operations last year after broadcasting in the country for five years.

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    censorship

    Big Sis is Big Sad

    Queen of disinfo gets dethroned.

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    It’s interesting how there’s a almost total Venn diagram overlap between ‘disinformation’ and information that embarrasses the regime.

    Funny that, isn’t it?

    Please share this video! https://youtu.be/X8XTDKDvmWk

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    French Open Warns Russian Players Not to Make Political Statements of Support For Putin

    Rules of ideological purity test set by organizers.

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    The French Open tennis tournament has warned Russian players not to make political statements in support of President Vladimir Putin if they wish to take part in the grand slam.

    Unlike Wimbledon, where they will be banned altogether, Russian and Belarusian players will be allowed to compete at Roland-Garros, but only under strictly neutral status.

    However, Russian stars have been cautioned that they will face sanctions if they express anything other than pro-Ukraine opinions in the media in the run up to the event.

    Roland-Garros Tournament Director Amelie Mauresmo made the tournament organizer’s position clear in a statement given to the press.

    “We keep the line of what all the European governments – and other governments – decided in March, i.e. national teams of Russia and Belarus banned, but not the athletes as individuals, as long as they play under strict neutrality,” said Mauresmo.

    “We will be very meticulous on that,” Mauresmo vowed. “[But] if any of them should have pro-Putin statements in the media, there will be sanctions for sure,” he added.

    This obviously sets a dangerous precedent in terms of the free speech of prominent public figures.

    Today, they’re mandated to support the NATO-aligned narrative about the Ukraine to be able to properly pursue their careers.

    Next year, it could be something completely different, and indeed it was when Novak Djokavic was punished by Australian authorities for refusing to take a COVID-19 vaccine.

    Who knows – sports athletes, actors, musicians could all in future be forced to sign up to some kind of ideological purity test that codifies their inability to challenge regime narratives lest they be hit with instant cancellation and career suicide.

    As we highlighted last month, Ukrainian tennis star Elina Svitolina demanded that Russian and Belarusian players be subjected to ideological purity tests before they are allowed to compete in international tournaments.

    Before Wimbledon slapped a total ban on all Russian players, then world number one Daniil Medvedev was told he would have to publicly denounce Vladimir Putin to be able to compete.

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    Elon Musk: Twitter Deal “Temporarily on Hold”

    Questions over true percentage of user accounts that are spam bots.

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    Billionaire Elon Musk announced that his deal to buy Twitter is “temporarily on hold” over questions about whether fake and spam accounts really do represent less than 5 per cent of users.

    “Twitter deal temporarily on hold pending details supporting calculation that spam/fake accounts do indeed represent less than 5% of users,” Musk tweeted.

    Despite Musk last week securing $7 billion from new investors for his $44billion takeover, Twitter shares fell 20 per cent in premarket trading in response to the news.

    The Tesla founder has made it one of his priorities to eliminate “spam bots” form the platform, which Twitter claims represent fewer than 5% of its monetisable daily active users.

    Media reports circulated earlier in the week suggesting Musk could still pull out of the deal and pay a $1 billion dollar compensation fee, but that may be waived if Twitter hasn’t been honest about the scale of its bot problem.

    Blue checkmarks on Twitter are likely to welcome the news that the deal is on hold given that they have been panicking for the last several weeks about being unable to further entrench their censorship agenda if Musk takes over the platform.

    Earlier this week, Musk asserted that the decision to permanently suspend President Donald Trump was “foolish” and that Trump would be allowed to re-instate his account after Musk’s takeover.

    The billionaire added that under his stewardship, permanent bans would become a thing of the past, aside from when they’re applied to fake accounts.

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