There's no Wayback in Russia: Putin blocks Archive.org

How easily one forgets

By Richard Chirgwin

Posted in Policy, 1st September 2015 23:33 GMT

Archive.org, home to the popular Wayback Machine, is again blocked in Russia, according to a site that monitors IP addresses banned in that country.

The Internet Archive's address, 207.241.224.2, turns up in the latest dump by Antizapret on GitHub.

The anti-censorship Antizapret maintains a list (currently beyond 12,000 addresses) of blocked IPs, and also provides information about anti-censorship tools like VPNs.

The blog Meduza.io, which reported Antizapret's original announcement, says the Kremlin's media watchdog agency, Roskomnadzor, took exception to Wayback archiving links to Syrian Islamist videos.

Because Archive.org uses HTTPS, the individual pages can't be blocked, to the whole site's been blacklisted.

It's not the first time the non-profit archive's robots have stored content that Roskomnadzor doesn't like. Wayback raised Russia's ire in June when it scooped up a page referring to the "theory and practice of partisan resistance."

The country has only just lifted a similar ban on Wikipedia, which was put in place because of an entry about cannabis.

The Archive.org ban happens to coincide with new laws coming into force in Russia, under which any Internet company with Russian customers has to store their data on local servers.

Google, Facebook, Twitter and others have been "meeting with the Kremlin in private to make sense of the law," according to Bloomberg. ®

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