Russia: Gay dating app blocked, users threatened with arrest

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

A Russian gay dating app has been blocked, with users threatened with arrest and imprisonment under the anti-gay propaganda law.

According to Dmitry T, the founder and CEO of the product, all members of the Grindr-like app were sent a message warning them that they will be arrested

It read: “You will be arrested and jailed for gay propaganda in Sochi according to Russian Federal Law #135 Sektion 6”

The app has been completely blocked in Adler and Sochi, where the Winter Olympic Games are due to open on Friday.

Vladimir Putin had previously said that gays were welcome at the Games “as long as they leave children alone.”

Dmitry T told Towleroad: “Hunters is blocked in Sochi and Adler now, and some 72,000 user profiles were deleted throughout Russia.”

“It looks like the Russian Government decided to take full control of the Internet and implement Turkish practices where Grindr has been banned for almost half a year.

“I think that this attack is connected to increasing censorship of the Internet and very soon other gay dating resources in Russia will face similar problems.”

“I urge the entire gay community and all of those who consider the Internet to be a free zone to boycott not only Russian vodka but also everything that is linked to the Olympics and not to buy any Olympic souvenirs.”