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The end of Vogue Russia

As censorship tightens, Condé Nast declares permanent cessation of publications

The end of Vogue Russia As censorship tightens, Condé Nast declares permanent cessation of publications

When Putin's troops invaded Ukraine last February, it was clear from the outset that the consequences would be irreversible and that the surrounding world would not stand by and watch. As the clashes continued and escalated, the fashion world took increasingly significant steps to show its solidarity with the beleaguered country. Among them, the Condé Nast group, which had already announced a large donation to the Ukrainian people, suspended its publications in Russia in March and then declared that «the escalation in the severity of censorship laws, which have significantly reduced freedom of speech and punished journalists simply for doing their job, has made our work in Russia untenable». In an emailed statement to Condé Nast's global employees, CEO Roger Lynch declared the group's publications on Russian soil to be permanently discontinued after more than 20 years of operation with titles such as Vogue Russia and the Russian editions of GQ, GQ Style, Tatler, Glamour and AD. 

Around 10 per cent of Russian staff will remain to fulfill outstanding obligations, while the rest of the staff will be offered severance pay, benefits, assistance, outplacement programs and guidance on applying for open positions in other markets. Hearst Magazines, which owns Elle, Esquire, Harper's Bazaar and Cosmopolitan, also terminated its licensing agreements for its Russian publications a day after Condé Nast announced its suspension in March. 

The conflict has therefore not only involved brands, which, from fast fashion to luxury, have decided to withdraw from Russian soil not only for logistical reasons but also as a sign of protest against the ongoing conflict. Even stronger has been the impact on publishing and the press, which have always had difficult relations with the repressive Russian government and which now also in the field of fashion and mass culture find themselves unable to carry out the most banal tasks due to the worsening of censorship laws.