By some measures, TikTok is the most downloaded social media app in the world. Yet even as it wins millions of users, democratic governments worry about the company’s ties to the government of the country of its origin: The People’s Republic of China.
Governments bodies in Australia and in like minded democracies overseas have taken to banning the app over fear of who has access to the data.
Until the full-scale invasion of Ukraine last year, much of the success of Russia under President Vladimir Putin has been due to the skilful spreading of Kremlin narratives to the world, frequently via the Russian diaspora.
But not all Russians abroad toe the propaganda line. A group in Australia has taken matters into its own hands, just as the Kremlin’s behaviour has become more undemocratic and threatening.
They formed the Svoboda Alliance – “Svoboda” is the Russian word for freedom. It has called on the “Australian government to expel Russian diplomats for their lies and propaganda”.