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Cover image for Developer hacktivism for Ukraine
Erebos Manannán
Erebos Manannán

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Developer hacktivism for Ukraine


One of the issues currently in Russia is the heavy propaganda and disinformation campaigns, as well as limits on access to truthful information.

If people inside Russia were better aware of exactly what is going on in the world, the support for the war in Ukraine could start falling rapidly.

What can I do?

Software authors, OSS project contributors, website owners

If you own a website, have authored software, or regularly contribute to popular OSS projects, one of the options at your disposal is adding a message condemning the war, Russian actions, or overall sharing the global sentiment, or truthful information on what actions Russia has performed.

You could do this e.g. via geolocation if you don't want to bother all your users, but more global awareness is not a bad thing either.

If you have a website, you could also use geolocation to set up a blackout for Russian visitors, with a dedicated message condemning the war.

Programmers of any level

Know how to code? Submit a PR to an existing project and propose adding such messages into the software, explain the reasoning in your PR description, and maybe try to gather support for it via social media.

Some practical ideas can be found via the various "awesome" -lists:

Other members of the development community

Can't code? No problem, you can still e.g. submit issues requesting such messages to be added to projects, particularly any that are largely made in, or popular inside Russia.

Some ideas can be found from:

An example of such an issue:

Desired effect

Lots of software auto-updates, which gives an easy way to distribute such messages.

Imagine Russians starting up Firefox to check something on Yandex, and Firefox includes messages on the titlebar. Imagine browser extensions sharing similar messages, SponsorBlock refusing to block ads on Youtube for Russians, or LibreOffice giving an alert message every time you try to open or save a document.

Imagine Russian developers trying to develop software during their normal daily job being greeted with notifications from npm, pip, and other every day tools condemning their government's actions.

Imagine Telegram and other messaging software sending notifications condemning the war to everyone within Russia every 12 hours.

Imagine if inside Russia software or games started refusing to launch, phones or cars refusing to function normally until the war is ended.

Yes, people can disable updates, make forks, etc. but it would become increasingly difficult to avoid hearing the truth.

Top comments (4)

ingosteinke profile image
Ingo Steinke

Also for everyone earning money in IT: support and donate! If you can't get involved in war and politics, you can still support Ukrainian open source projects and donate for charity organizations.

vitalipom profile image
Vitali Pomanitski

Ingo, regardless of yourself being from Germany and still willing to support Ukraine. I’m here to say you have a beautiful profile picture! Your intentions are very well seen from your face expression. Keep it up! Kudos. And thank you, I’m Ukrainian originally.

bassome profile image
Rebecca Allred

Me and my colegues at would also like to support. Please more and more work and help us donate more and more. We help internet users with tech guides. Please support so we can support them. Read what does pending mean on snapchat. Thanks

aidukraine profile image
AID Ukraine Online

Another charitable organization has recently been established, welcome