Roku is joining the ranks of tech companies dropping state-backed Russian media following that country’s invasion of Ukraine. The company has confirmed to Politico that it’s pulling the RT channel from its worldwide platform after initially removing it in Europe, where the European Union banned the media outlet along with another state-supported news agency, Sputnik.In a statement, Roku said it was making a principled stand and rejected suggestions this might amount to censorship. The US Constiution’s First Amendment lets private companies practice “sound, moral judgment” regarding the content they offer, according to Roku. It believed the US had to remain “fully united” for democracy and against misinformation.RT and Sputnik are both understood to take direction from the Russian government and promote its agenda, including its justifications for invading Ukraine. RT had to register with the US as a foreign agency in 2017 following Justice Department attention.The effort follows crackdowns on RT and Sputnik from Apple, Google, Meta and others. TV providers like DirecTV have also pulled relevant channels. These tech firms want to both show solidarity with Ukraine and demonstrate a quick response to misinformation campaigns, and it won’t be surprising if others follow suit.

Roku is joining the ranks of tech companies dropping state-backed Russian media following that country’s invasion of Ukraine. The company has confirmed to Politico that it’s pulling the RT channel from its worldwide platform after initially removing it in Europe, where the European Union banned the media outlet along with another state-supported news agency, Sputnik.

In a statement, Roku said it was making a principled stand and rejected suggestions this might amount to censorship. The US Constiution’s First Amendment lets private companies practice “sound, moral judgment” regarding the content they offer, according to Roku. It believed the US had to remain “fully united” for democracy and against misinformation.

RT and Sputnik are both understood to take direction from the Russian government and promote its agenda, including its justifications for invading Ukraine. RT had to register with the US as a foreign agency in 2017 following Justice Department attention.

The effort follows crackdowns on RT and Sputnik from Apple, Google, Meta and others. TV providers like DirecTV have also pulled relevant channels. These tech firms want to both show solidarity with Ukraine and demonstrate a quick response to misinformation campaigns, and it won’t be surprising if others follow suit.

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