Apple orders ‘Russian YouTube’ to remove content – platform

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The Silicon Valley giant took issue with videos produced by “state-sponsored media,” Rutube says

Apple has given Russian video-hosting platform Rutube two weeks to hide content produced by the country’s state-linked media from global users in its iOS app, the Moscow-based service said.

“Apple is proposing to solve the moderation problem with two steps: make the app accessible only for Russian users, or remove the content by ‘state-sponsored media,’” Rutube said in a statement to Russian news agency TASS on Monday.

Rutube said that Apple had threatened to delete the app from AppStore unless it complies. The company noted that it has already barred access to the app from all countries except for Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan.

“Rutube doesn’t plan to place restrictions on the Russian media because it violates the rights of the Russian-speaking population,” the company said.

READ MORE: Russia fines US tech giants

Launched in 2006, the platform has been described as the Russian version of YouTube. It continues to host Russian state-linked media, including TV channels Rossiya 1 and Channel One, as well as several popular podcasters and bloggers, after their videos were banned from YouTube in response to Moscow’s military operation in Ukraine, which was launched in late February.

Like many global brands, Apple suspended business activities in Russia in March and left the country’s market.

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