On March 1, after a week of horror in Ukraine, reports were circulated that the Russian censorship bureau had threatened to block the Russian Wikipedia.
Alexander, 32, had a plan: to download a local copy of the Russian Wikipedia.
"I did it just in case", Reported before adding that he and his wife were "preparing to move to another country" with their two dogs, Prime and Shaggy.
Instagram has been blocked in Russia, but there are many who continue to access it using virtual private networks. On Monday, the Russian government officially declared Facebook and Instagram "extremist organizations."
Alexander was not the only Russian citizen to download Wikipedia. The data show that after the threats of censorship, the Russians began to download the online encyclopedia en masse.
Russia is currently the country with the most Wikipedia downloads. Before the invasion, the country was not even in the top 10, but after February 24, Russia is firmly in first place.
The 29-gigabyte file containing a Russian-language Wikipedia was downloaded 105.889 times in the first half of March, up 4.000 percent from the first half of January.
Recall that something similar happened in 2017 when Turkey blocked Wikipedia.
Wikipedia offers publicly to download its databases. The entire English Wikipedia is 87 GB with photos or 47 GB without. The Russian Wikipedia is even smaller, with 1,8 million articles compared to the 6,4 million English version.
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