Elena Rodina, Europe and Central Asia Research Associate

Elena Rodina, a native of Kazan, Russia, worked as a Moscow-based sociopolitical correspondent for Ogoniok, one of the oldest weekly Russian magazines, and Esquire Russia. Her journalism and research have been published in Caucasus Survey, Digital Ethics, Time Out Chicago, Newcity, Media and Communication, and Zeitschrift fur Slavische Philologie, among other outlets. Rodina holds a PhD in Communication Studies from Northwestern University, and an MA in Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies from the University of Oregon, in addition to her bachelor’s degree in Romanic-Germanic Philology from Russia’s Kazan Federal (former State) University.

Figures are seen in the foreground of a large government building surrounded by trash and discarded paper.

Kyrgyz journalists on the online ‘fake farms’ that threaten to kill them

“At first, they appeared on my Instagram, then they showed up on my Facebook and YouTube accounts,” Ali Toktakunov told CPJ in a phone interview. The investigative Kyrgyz journalist and founder of Ali Toktakunov’s Media Hub, a foundation for investigative journalism, says he is a frequent target of trolls or fake social media accounts that…

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Women ‘have finally started talking’: Three female journalists on covering sexual violence in Russia

Reporting on gender-based violence in Russia has become more challenging in recent years. In 2017 the government controversially decriminalized some forms of domestic violence, leading to a sharp drop in reported incidents, which journalists told CPJ does not reflect the true scope of the problem. And last year, Russia passed a new libel law to punish false accusers of sexual assault, leaving journalists…

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Meet Mediazona, the punk rock-founded Russian news outlet whose editor was jailed for a tweet

Of the more than 100 Russian journalists who have been arrested or fined covering rallies in support of jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny, Mediazona chief editor Sergey Smirnov has become a symbol of the absurd lengths to which Russian authorities are willing to go to quash coverage of the events.  On January 20, Smirnov retweeted another person’s tweet saying…

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To police, ‘the camera is like a red cloth to a bull’: four journalists on covering Russia’s pro-Navalny protests

On January 23, Russia erupted in nationwide demonstrations against the January 17 arrest of Alexei Navalny. The opposition leader was taken into custody at a Moscow airport when he flew home after five months in Berlin, where he was undergoing medical treatment after having been poisoned. (He alleges the Russian government is responsible; Russian president…

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BBC correspondent describes staying safe, finding journalistic camaraderie during Nagorno-Karabakh’s 6-week war

Journalists who covered the recent six-week-long conflict between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces in the breakaway region of Nagorno-Karabakh faced violence to get the story of the region’s latest bloody chapter to the world. At least six journalists were injured in shelling attacks in Nagorno-Karabakh and two were assaulted when a mob descended on a broadcaster in Armenia to oppose its reporting on…

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Freelancer Vladimir Sevrinovsky on covering COVID-19 in the North Caucasus: ‘The main misinformation I fight is from the state’

Vladimir Sevrinovsky is a Moscow-based freelance journalist and documentary photographer who has covered social and cultural issues in Russia for independent news site Meduza, independent weekly Russkii Reporter, and Kavkaz.Realii, a regional service of the U.S. Congress-funded broadcaster Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, among others. Sevrinovsky’s most recent assignment was to report from Russia’s North Caucasus…

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