Museum Exhibitions, Dell, Anti-Disinformation Efforts, More: Ukraine Update, August 29, 2022


Museums + Heritage Advisor: Six months on, Ukraine remains in focus. “This week marks six months since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, an attack which has continued to devastate the country, its museums and cultural sites among the collateral…. In March, Arts Council England (ACE) provided new guidance for museums planning to work with companies and artists from Russia and Belarus in response to the invasion. Now in August, the pace of support through exhibitions shows no signs of slowing down.”

Reuters: Dell Ceases All Russian Operations After August Offices Closure . “Dell Technologies Inc. said on Saturday it had ceased all Russian operations after closing its offices in mid-August, the latest in a growing list of Western firms to exit Russia. The U.S. computer firm, a vital supplier of servers in Russia, has joined others in curtailing operations since Moscow sent tens of thousands of troops into Ukraine on Feb. 24.”

Reuters: Google to roll out anti-disinformation campaign in some EU countries. “Google’s Jigsaw subsidiary will launch a campaign next week to tackle disinformation in Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic about Ukrainian refugees based on research by psychologists at two British universities.”


WIRED: Their Photos Were Posted Online. Then They Were Bombed. “Analysts and online sleuths, such as journalists at the investigative news outlet Bellingcat, have developed and professionalized open source investigation techniques for years. Open source intelligence, also known as OSINT, involves the use of public data—such as social media posts, flight tracking data, and satellite images, among other sources—to let anyone investigate events worldwide, from potential war crimes to human rights violations. Piecing together small details from multiple sources of information can allow investigators to understand a clearer picture of events on the ground.”

BBC: Gamescom: The Ukrainian video game makers who kept working in a war zone. “Like many colleagues in the video game industry, Iryna Bilous and Nika Avayan recently arrived at the world’s largest gaming conference, Gamescom in Germany, to show off their latest title to fans. But for these two Ukrainians, the road to the trade fair has been anything but a normal journey.”

Motherboard: Kaspersky Employees Say They Were Asked to Resign Because They Wanted To Leave Russia . “In the wake of the invasion, at least two employees told Motherboard they asked to be relocated outside of Russia. A third source who still works at the company also told Motherboard that some Kaspersky employees were asked to resign after those employees asked to live and work somewhere else.”

Fast Company: Inside Russia’s cartoonish propaganda website made for kids. “It has been almost six months since the world watched in horror as Russia invaded Ukraine, under the false pretext of protecting Russia from potential aggression. But Russia’s very own presidential website may have been laying the groundwork for years.”


The Guardian: Russia’s Yandex to sell off news service as state tightens grip on online media. “Russia’s largest internet company is to sell off its news and blogging services to the state-controlled social media platform VK in a deal that will increase direct state control over the news many Russians see online.”

Bleeping Computer: Russia’s ‘Oculus’ to use AI to scan sites for banned information. “Russia’s internet watchdog Roskomnadzor is developing a neural network that will use artificial intelligence to scan websites for prohibited information. Called ‘Oculus,’ the automatic scanner will analyze URLs, images, videos, and chats on websites, forums, social media, and even chat/messenger channels to locate material that should be redacted or taken down.”

Jerusalem Post: Russia’s state watchdog restricts TikTok, Zoom and other IT companies . “Russia’s state communications watchdog Roskomnadzor said on Friday that it was taking punitive measures against a string of foreign IT companies including TikTok, Telegram, Zoom, Discord and Pinterest, according to Russian media.”


Foreign Policy: Information Warfare in Russia’s War in Ukraine. “Strategic propaganda campaigns, including those peddling disinformation, are by no means new during warfare, but the shift toward social media as the primary distribution channel is transforming how information warfare is waged, as well as who can participate in ongoing conversations to shape emerging narratives.” This article is partially-paywalled, but enough is available that it’s worth a link.

Stanford Internet Observatory: How Unmoderated Platforms Became the Frontline for Russian Propaganda. “In an essay for Lawfare Blog, Samantha Bradshaw, Renee DiResta and Christopher Giles look at how state war propaganda in Russia is increasingly prevalent on platforms that offer minimal-moderation virality as their value proposition.”

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