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Telegram has blocked bots with pre-election campaigning in the elections in the Russian Federation

The founder of Telegram, Pavel Durov, said that his service would block the work of bots associated with election campaigning in the Russian Federation, including the Smart Voting bot and kylasuzin.

“Since the election campaign in Russia has come to an end and the election process itself has begun, the so-called” days of silence “are beginning – a tradition enshrined in th

e laws of many countries that provides for the absence of campaigning during the elections themselves. We consider this practice legitimate, and we urge Telegram users respect her – from midnight Moscow time, we plan to restrict the functioning of bots associated with the election campaign, “Durov wrote in his telegram channel.

He recalled that on Friday, Google and Apple blocked the application of the supporters of opposition leader Alexei Navalny “Smart Voting”.

The bot is currently blocked because it “violates local laws”.

According to him, “this year, Apple and Google have already approached us with a demand to remove publicly available information in accordance with the laws of individual countries under the threat of excluding Telegram from the catalogs of Google Play and App Store applications.”

He believes that “policy changes from Apple and Google will inevitably affect Telegram, as they, as the creators of the two major mobile operating systems, are at the top of the information distribution food chain and can dictate the rules of the game to developers.”

At 8:00 Moscow time on Friday, September 17, Google and Apple removed the Smart Vote app from Google Play and the App Store.

On September 16, representatives of Google and Apple attended a meeting of the Federation Council Commission for the Protection of State Sovereignty. After the meeting, Deputy Head of Roskomnadzor Vadim Subbotin said that companies could be fined if they refuse to remove the application from their stores. According to Subbotin, they were unable to clarify the position of the companies on the issue of removing the application from their stores.

In late August and early September, the RKN demanded that Apple and Google remove the Navalny application from their App Store and Google Play stores, since, according to the department, it is used to continue the activities of the Fight Fund, a recognized extremist organization banned in the Russian Federation. corruption “(FBK, recognized in the Russian Federation as a foreign agent).