Namecheap Is Silencing Anti-Putin Voices in Russia

well, at least doing its part in it

Russian users are receiving letters from Namecheap stating they have until March 6 to transfer their domains to another provider.

For pro-regime users, it’s a nuisance, of course. Not a major one, though, since the pro-regime Russians tend to have their domains in the .ru zone, and have them registered at the Russian providers.

Anti-regime users, including bloggers, foundations, and other organizations, on the other hand, need to have their domains registered abroad, and have no other choice. Roskomnadzor, the Russian communications watchdog (serving as the censorship agency for the regime) is blocking anti-Putin publications left and right, and has, on numerous occasions, subpoenaed the domain registrars based in Russia to stop providing services to those violating the Russian regulations1.

The Russian regime has successfully exterminated anti-Putin newspapers, radio stations and TV channels in Russia. The only way for the opposition to communicate anything to the public at large is the Internet, because of its global nature. As long as a website is hosted outside of Russia, and its domain is not controlled by a Russian registrar, it can be read by people in Russia (through Tor or a VPN, in a worst-case scenario), and thus the anti-regime voices can be heard,

Namecheap is currently doing everything in its power to silence these voices.

I’m glad to have never been Namecheap’s customer.

  1. That is, to those saying anything different from the official state propaganda. Roskomnadzor has explicitly stated that “spreading false information on the Internet is the basis for immediate blocking”, and that “the Russian official sources are the ones that have the true and factual information”. It has also intiated retaliation against the media that “called the ongoing Special Operation an attack, an invasion, or a war”. ↩︎