Is Russia planning to ban gay emojis?


These Facebook LGBT Pride emojis were introduced last year

Russia’s obsession with outlawing all representations of homosexuality could soon be extended to gay-themed emojis or emoticons.

According to, Senator Mikhail Marchenko has called for Russian media regulator and censor Roskomnadzor to investigate “the presence of propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations among minors” on social media sites such as Facebook.

He asked the agency to look at the use of the LGBT symbols on these platforms which, Marchenko claims, contravenes the country’s gay propaganda law.

The senator said that the emoticons “with different sexual orientations” are “visible to all users of social networks, most of which are minors”.

Marchenko argued that “the promotion of homosexuality is prohibited under the law, and is against the traditional values that exist in our country.” He insisted that the need for action against the gay emojis and emoticons “is obvious and urgent”.

Roskomnadzor is reported to have agreed to look into the issue.

In June 2013, Russian President Putin signed a federal law banning gay “propaganda” which has been used to restrict media freedom and music concerts, to ban gay Pride events and protests and has led to an increase in discrimination against LGBT people.

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