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26 July 2012

Media Landscape Shifts With Putin's Return

If prime-time television is any indicator, the country's media landscape is undergoing a major shakeup.

Last weekend, Svetlana Kuritsina, a provincial activist for a pro-Kremlin youth organization, debuted on NTV national television with her own show, “Luch Sveta,” or “Ray of Light.” During the half-hour road show, the somewhat inarticulate 19-year-old was shown discussing how she could use her overdeveloped bust for her career.

Kuritsina, better known as “Sveta from Ivanovo,” became an Internet sensation last winter after a video surfaced of her rambling about how Russians “have become more better dressed” under Vladimir Putin. Her Saturday night debut was watched by 357,900 viewers, more than any other television show that evening, Izvestia reported.

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Media Subject to New Dry Law on Ads

Print media holdings and Internet portals will become a bit drier this year following the government's decision to prohibit them from publishing alcohol advertisements.

President Vladimir Putin signed off on the changes to the advertising law last Saturday, but representatives of the alcohol industry and media outlets are concerned about the effect these rules will have on their revenues and ability to reach out to customers.

The new rules banning alcohol advertisements are effective immediately in Internet sources and will take effect in print media on Jan. 1, 2013, according to a press release published on the president's website.

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