Russia Blocks Reddit Over Magic Mushroom Thread
Russia is well known for its love of state-controlled media and censorship. The latest victim? Reddit: one of the world’s largest community websites.
Reddit is a fascinating website. It is a sprawling jungle of knowledge with all kinds of diverse and interesting discussions taking place. Chances are, no matter your interests, you will be able to find something on there to keep you entertained/learning. It would appear that this is a bit too much for Russia, who have blocked its use because of a two-year-old article explaining how to grow magic mushrooms. Apparently the Russian authorities asked Reddit to take the page down, but when they didn’t they decided to take drastic measures.
The thread alone could not technically be blocked, because Reddit employs https and many Russian ISPs don’t have the technology to block individual pages with this encryption. As such, they have gone and blacklisted the whole site, ensuring all bases are covered in a move that can only be described as overkill. It makes this site the latest victim of Russian censorship.
The Roskomnadzor, the government department responsible, is the overarching watchdog that deals with all Russian media. When it comes to the internet, the Roskomnadzor is meant to focus on protecting its citizens from extremism, abuse, and other dangers. Apparently this includes anything the government doesn’t quite like, with the Jehovah’s Witnesses website, the Internet Wayback Machine, and even the personal website of a government critic featuring on their blacklist.
It is crazy really that so much information can be gagged. Fortunately, mushroom cultivation is not something exclusive to Reddit, and Russian psychonauts still have plenty of places to go to learn and hone their craft.