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Even RIA-Novosti, Russia's largest state-owned news agency, was abolished as too outspoken and is due to be revamped under the watch of Kremlin spin doctor Dmitry Kiselyov.
"Vedomosti" newspaper came under fire for publishing an opinion piece by respected scholar Andrei Zubov comparing Putin's actions in Crimea to the Nazi Anschluss.
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'Kill List' Positive references to pro-Russian forces as "polite people" and "support for Crimea" were also found lacking in the top-20 outlets, whose texts were also evaluated for emotional shading and tone.
Moskovskiye novosti The publications, in addition to favoring so-called "negative" rhetoric, may have also contributed to their ranking by doing any of the following: comparing the actions of Russian politicians to those of Nazis; using the word "aggression" to describe Russia's behavior in Ukraine, appeals for Russia to be isolated or subject to sanctions, or favorable references to Ukraine's Euromaidan protests or the Right Sector nationalist movement.
The country's open media has come under punishing scrutiny as Russian President Vladimir Putin has sought to eliminate alternatives to the Kremlin narrative.
Aleksandr Dugin, the conservative political adviser described in this week's "Foreign Affairs" as "Putin's Brain," reposted the list on his Facebook page, saying, "This is the order in which Russia's most contemptible media outlets will be closed or blocked (in the cases of those located outside Russia's borders)." The list -- and Dugin's injunction -- is certain to send a chill through Russia's free-press advocates.
A pro-Kremlin political news site says it has developed a computer algorithm to determine which media outlets are the most anti-Russian.