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Навальный Navalny

Time magazine named blogger Alexey Navalny Russia\’s Erin Brockovich for his campaign against corruption. A lawyer and net activist, he has used his popularity and prosperity to force state-influenced companies, in which he owns a minority stake, to make their dealings conform with legal regulations the companies\’ boards want to ignore. His work forces the companies to be more transparent. In November 2010, he published confidential documents showing the date-owned company Transneft\’s management stole some $4 billion from the company – and that the theft was orchestrated by Vladimir Putin – if the documents are genuine.


Роспил Rospil

This community aims to catch and punish the state employees who are using state purchases and calls for tender for their own personal gain. Community members search out expensive and short public calls for bids. Membership is open to all. A flagged call for bids is then monitored and evaluated by the site\’s experts. Should the experts uncover irregularities, they contact prosecutors to file a lawsuit. Several call for bids have been suspended because of the site\’s work. Lawyers are paid by donations made to the site. Three well-known blogger monitor the distribution of donations.


Дорогая редакция Dear Editors

The Twitter account written by lenta.ru is filled with humor and biting commentary by the team of reporters at Russia\’s most-visited news portal. The writers select feature stories, interact with users and report on the big and small happenings within the organization.


Родинки на карте Birthmark on the Map

“A birthmark on the Map” is a community of citizen journalists – or, more precisely put, citizen photo-journalists – who document life in provincial Russia. The result of a local project, the portal provides a window into the small cities and smaller villages that have largely been forgotten by Moscow. Birthmark (Rodinki) is a play on words and can mean both “birthmark” and “little home.”



Taktaktak is a social network for human rights. It allows users to report human rights violations, discuss their personal experiences and share ideas. Other users are also experts in the field and introduce people to places where they can get help or even get connected with lawyers if needed.


Перзидент России Russian Persident

@kermlinrussia is a parody of the Twitter account for Russian President Dmitry Medevev. It’s an example of extremely effective political satire.


Телеканал \”Дождь\” Rain TV

Rain TV was among the very first Facebook television broadcasters. As television in Russia has come under the near complete control of the state, Rain TV has positioned itself as the station people watch (on the Internet) because they’re sick of watching whatever is on tv. Rain TV works to reach the people who are looking for information and are ready to take responsibility for their lives, the environment and are willing to get actively involved in improving things.


Обществосиних ведерок Blue Bucket Society

The \”Society for the Blue Bucket\” and its blog came into life to call into account the civil servants who abuse special blue lights for their cars to get through traffic faster. In Russia, cars carrying politicians race down streets – sometimes on the wrong side of the road – and end up causing serious accidents. Often the people slowing down traffic by making other stop don\’t even have the right to use the lights. The blog\’s users showed their disgust with the practice by putting blue buckets on their cars. Their protest has been successful and led to stricter conditions being set on the use of blue lights and the people who are allowed to have them. A greater success, however, is that the blog got people who were normally apolitical, passive citizens to take part in protests. The blog has expanded to include protests against other ways power is abused.


Zhgun\’s Journal

Up-to-date, sharp and humorous caricatures, comics and animations based on current Russian political topics. Among the protagonists is \”Captain Obvious\” who switches between the roles of Putin and Medvedev. The Russian leaders’ statements, such as \”Russia needs an independent judiciary,\” are clearly self-evident yet far-removed from reality. Visitors to the blog can also use a script to put their own words into a caricature\’s mouth.


Street Journal. Моя территория

This community shows how bloggers and local authorities can work well together. It\’s setup to allow any user to alert the appropriate authority to problems they see, such as unsafe construction zones, illegal business operations, dangerous street conditions), and mark them on an online map. The reports are forwarded automatically to the people in government who can do something about fixing them and improving life on a local level. The online community follows the way officials react, put the government under pressure when it doesn\’t react and update the map so it\’s clear what has been dealt with. Nearly 20 percent of problems registered on the site are marked green to show they have been addressed and corrected.


Дал слово He Gave His Word

Citizens keep politicians to the word! This community blog collects politicians\’ promises and checks up to see whether they are fulfilled. Users can register promises at the site and join the observation team that judges whether the promises are kept. Should politicians give a date for when they want to have done something, it\’s listed in the \”calendar of promises,\” allowing people to see what has been forgotten – or was possibly never going to be done – as well as when politicians stick to their words.