Wikipedia's on drugs again, complains Russia

No threat of ban yet, but it can't be far off on past form

Russia has again pointed out, pointedly, that Wikipedia contains content it doesn't want its citizens to see.

Russia routinely tries to keep information on how to make illegal drugs away from its citizens, as part of an ongoing internal crackdown. That stance saw the nation take on Reddit over posts about magic mushrooms, ban Wikipedia over articles about marijuana and then plan its own online encyclopaedia.

Now Russian telecoms regulator Roskomnadzor has let it be known that "information published in Wikipedia articles on common narcotic drugs... has been found illegal by the Federal Drug Control Service of the Russian Federation."

Roskomnadzor says the articles in question include "information about manufacturing, development, and use of synthetic narcotic drugs", content forbidden in Russia.

Pointing out that the articles have been declared illegal means Roskomnadzor is effectively telling Russian telcos and ISPs not to allow access. Past such advisories have been lifted once articles were edited to Russian specifications, although Russia has also threatened to block all of Wikipedia.

At the time of writing, the offending articles still include material offensive to Russia. And of course they also include their edit histories, as do all Wikipedia articles, so if the illegal-in-Russia material is removed it will still be there to see for those who know their way around the encyclopaedia. ®

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