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Russia Blocks Web’s Two Biggest Porn Sites, Leading To National Uproar

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Elena Weissmann Contributor

Russia banned the two biggest porn sites in the world this week, leading to frustration and anger among porn lovers around the country.

The block was enacted by Roskomnadzor, the Russian federal executive body responsible for regulating the media and mass communications. The sites banned — PornHub and YouPorn — now direct users to a message informing them that they have been blocked “by decision of public authorities.”

The decision was made following two separate court rulings that concluded the websites “spread pornography,” and Russian law blocks “the illegal production, dissemination and advertisement of pornographic materials and objects,” according to BBC.

Roskomnadzor has blacklisted thousands of websites in the past, and in 2015, it banned 11 porn websites. Following the 2015 ban, a frustrated porn user, Lyolya, asked the agency for an alternative. It simply replied, “Dear Lyolya, as an alternative you could try and meet someone in real life.”

Roskomnadzor retweeted itself this week in response to uproar on social media following the ban, adding to the original post, “Dear lovers of the Internet, this piece of advice still stands.”

This prompted a response from the original Lyolya, who asked why the agency had not “come up with something new.”

PornHub has also taken to Twitter to fight the block, going so far as to kindly offer up a premium subscription to its service in exchange for Roskomnadzor’s lift of the ban. Although possibly tempted, the agency said it was “not in the market” for the offer.

A Russian court will rule at a later date whether the ban will remain.

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