When Apple and Google bowed to Russian pressure to remove a political opposition app from their app stores, concerns abounded that the tech giants are more comfortable acquiescing to undemocratic edicts than upholding the rights of their users, according to the Associated Press
(22 September, Liedtke, Ortutay). The app in question, called Smart Voting, was a tool for organizing opposition to Russian President Vladimir Putin ahead of elections held last weekend. But last week, both Apple and Google banned the app from their stores, frustrating supporters of free elections and free expression. Natalia Krapiva, tech legal counsel for Access Now, said the move was "bad news for democracy and dissent all over the world," and predicted that "other dictators [will copy] Russia's tactics." According to a person with direct knowledge of the situation, Google faced legal demands by Russian regulators and threats of criminal prosecution of individual employees if it failed to comply.
From "Apple, Google Raise New Concerns by Yanking Russian App"
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