Authoritarian Practices in the Digital Age| Information, Security, and Authoritarian Stability: Internet Policy Diffusion and Coordination in the Former Soviet Region

Jaclyn A. Kerr


This article examines Internet policies across the former Soviet region, showing that many of the region’s nondemocratic regimes have adopted similar approaches to control Internet content and use within their territories. The implication that specific control practices are diffusing or being coordinated on within the region is substantiated by close examination of particular approaches and their origins. While these states have made relatively limited use of static content censorship, alternative, less overt controls have spread across the region. Tracing the roles of diffusion and coordination mechanisms, the article demonstrates how, even as overall Internet repression levels have increased, the particular legal frameworks, technical systems, and other control practices used have been deeply influenced by complex regional interdependencies.


authoritarianism, Internet, censorship, surveillance

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