Staunton, December 19 – Immigrants to Russia from CIS countries often turn to online portals because they lack information and contacts needed to adapt, Dmitry Timoshkin says. Many of these sites help and promote solidarity among migrants but others seek to exploit immigrants or draw them into one or another part of the shadow economy.
These sites are thus a two-edged sword. On the one hand, they promote solidarity among ethnic and regional communities; but on the other, they breed suspiciousness about Russian society and even about other immigrants, given that some of them are involved in the for-profit sites or even criminal activity.
Timoshkin, a sociologist at the Russian Academy of Economics and State Service, reports on 40 of these sites in “Trust versus Disorientation: The Economics of Russian-Speaking ‘Migrant’ Groups in Social Networks” (in Russian), Ekonomicheskaya Sotsiologiya 20: 5 (November 2019), pp. 53-73 (ecsoc.hse.ru/data/2019/11/30/1519237930/ecsoc_t20_n5.pdf.) A summary is available at iq.hse.ru/news/324642477.html