SOCIETY

Anti-Kremlin Group Lands On Russia Watch List Over Rainbow Logo

The VK satire page became a lightening rod for Russia's social media culture war, a sort of score board showing the number of Russian LGBT versus anti-LGBT activists online

Jun 29, 2015 at 11:57 AM ET

An anti-Kremlin social media group was placed on a watch list after it changed its logo to the gay pride rainbow flag for a few hours on Saturday.

Lentach, one of the most popular satire pages on the Russian social media platform VK took a page from Facebook’s playbook by placing a rainbow backdrop to its shrug emoticon logo and renamed itself  “LGBTach” for a few hours over the weekend.  This attracted attention from the Kremlin’s media watchdog, Roskomnadzor, which immediately put the group on a watch list.

The VK satire page became a lightening rod for Russia’s social media culture war, a sort of score board showing the number of Russian LGBT versus anti-LGBT activists online. Thousands of users unsubscribed from the page in protest, while others joined. Anti-LGBT users claimed the page would disappear altogether. But within 24 hours the community had returned to it’s original size, with the addition of one unexpected follower, Milonov, who has become the butt of Russian jokes across social media.

After the U.S. Supreme Court legalized gay marriage nationwide on Friday, the celebratory rainbow trends online stirred up controversy in Russia, which passed a law in 2013 banning the promotion or display of homosexuality in front of minors.

Russian politician Vitaly Milonov has proposed banning Facebook after the site added a rainbow flag filter for users to show support for LGBT rights with their profile pictures. “It is a crude violation of Russian legislation. Facebook has no age limits, it is impossible to control how many minors are there,” Milonov said on Russian radio Saturday evening.

Translation: “Lentach changes its name to LGBTch, I’m sitting and refreshin the page – watching how people unsubscribe and the number of member decreases with every refresh “

https://twitter.com/torry_man/status/614843896699465728

Translation: “Lentach changed its name to LGBTch and led to a nuclear explosion by bloggers / commentators”

Translation: “A great thing has just happened, Milinov has joined the LGBTch community #lovewins

Read More:

Apple’s Russian Siri Accused of Homophobia (Vocativ)
Russian MP urges Facebook block over gay rights rainbow flag (The Telegraph)