Duolingo Under Fire: LGBT Propaganda Allegations in Russia Ignite Controversy

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02/09/2024

In an unexpected turn, Duolingo, the widely popular language-learning app, finds itself at the heart of a controversy in Russia. Accused of disseminating LGBT propaganda, the company is now under investigation by Roskomnadzor, the country’s federal executive body responsible for supervising communications, information technology, and mass media. The investigation was triggered by a complaint from an activist organization in Novosibirsk, following concerns raised by parents about certain sentences in the app that mention LGBT individuals. The specific sentence that sparked the controversy is said to be “I am learning Russian with my boyfriend,” which some users found displayed alongside an image of a rainbow-colored owl, a recognized symbol of the LGBT community.

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