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Russia to block Google, Facebook and Twitter

Global marketing news – 27 May 2015

Russia to block Google, Facebook and Twitter

Russian authorities have threatened to fine and block Google, Facebook and Twitter for allegedly breaking the Russian “blogging law”.

The law in question says that bloggers with more than 3,000 daily readers must register their real identities with the Russian government.

Critics of the law say that it stifles free speech but the Russian government insists it is necessary in order to hold bloggers accountable if they post content encouraging crime or public disorder.

Google, Facebook and Twitter have apparently been ignoring requests from the Russian government to disclose which of its users have pages with over 3,000 daily views and also the identities of these users.

The Russian authorities have said that they simply want to know the identities of users who have allegedly been posting “extremist” content online, and that it will consider blocking entire sites if Google, Facebook and Twitter do not get rid of the content themselves.

Alibaba sued over counterfeit goods

Kering Group, which owns several luxury brands such as Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent, has launched a lawsuit against Alibaba.

Alibaba, the leading Chinese e-commerce site, is accused of not doing enough to combat the sale of fake luxury products.

A wide range of counterfeit luxury products are allegedly being sold on the site for as little as 2 US dollars, where the genuine products are worth closer to 1,000 US dollars.

Alibaba has been accused of being too slow when it comes to banning accounts selling counterfeit products, as it operates a “3 strikes and you are out”  policy rather than banning fake accounts immediately.

More seriously, it is also accused of making money by selling misspelled keywords such as “guchi” that drive traffic to counterfeit product pages. Its online payment platform Alipay is also accused of knowingly providing payment services to counterfeit sellers.

Alibaba has publically hit out against the allegations, saying it has worked extensively to combat the sale of counterfeit products on its platform and that it will be fighting the lawsuit “vigorously”.

Evercross wants to be bring “the next billion people online”

The Indonesian mobile manufacturer Evercross has launched a 2-week campaign to help get more Indonesians onto smartphones.

Around half of Indonesians use feature phones and these users typically have very limited experience in browsing the internet.

The Evercross campaign, which sees it partnering up with the Norwegian Opera Mini browser, will be targeting these people and has the ambitious goal of getting “the next billion people online”.

With this campaign, feature phone users will be given 3 hours of free internet access if they use the Opera Mini browser.

Prior to using the 3-hour pass, users will be presented with adverts for new Evercross smartphone models, and after they have used up the 3 hour pass they will see data package options that are available to buy.

Evercross hopes that the initiative will introduce the internet to Indonesia’s 54% feature phone users and encourage them to upgrade to smartphones.

Lenovo sees record shipments but profits struggle

The Chinese tech manufacturer Lenovo saw record smartphone shipments in the last quarter of 2014 – its first quarter as the new owner of Motorola.

Lenovo shipped almost 19 million smartphones during that time period, an increase of 3 million on the previous quarter.

It also broke its PC sales shipments too, shipping 60 million PCs during 2014.

Despite record shipments, however, its profits have been struggling, falling 37% on the previous year.

With many countries now reaching mobile and PC saturation point, Lenovo has said it will consider changing its business model from being solely a hardware manufacturer to producing software too.

Twitter growing fastest in Latin America

And finally, Twitter uptake will be fastest in Latin America this year, according to estimates by Global Web index.

The number of new Twitter users is predicted to grow by 17% in Latin America this year, with the majority of these new users being from Brazil, Mexico and Argentina.

However, as Latin America had a low number of Twitter users in the first place, this growth is not so impressive in real-terms.

Next year, Twitter growth is expected to be strongest in the Middle East and Africa.

Webcertain’s global marketing news bulletins are daily 5-minute videos, providing marketers with the latest international digital marketing news in an easy-to-digest format.

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Elin Box

Content Marketing Manager at Webcertain
Elin is a Content Marketing Manager at Webcertain. She is responsible for Webcertain’s Self-learning platform, producing in-depth guides on a range of international digital marketing topics. She also helps run the Webcertain blog and is the writer of the Webcertain search and social report, an annual report summarising digital marketing best practices in over 50 countries. She is passionate about educating and empowering people to make the best decisions for their business and is proud to help share Webcertain’s wealth of digital marketing knowledge with the world. Elin is from the UK.

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