8.4.3 Associations of citizens, advocacy groups, NGOs and advisory panels
Authorities support traditional amateur arts, especially folk arts and crafts. However, since the 1990s, the variety of new amateur cultural activities expanded to include e.g. Viking or ancient Russian battle art and production of relevant armaments, exotic ceremonies like the Japanese tea ceremony and others. Participants involved establish formal (e.g. military history) and informal associations that access cultural institutions (museums, libraries, clubs) and the Internet. For example, the Yandex Fotki (http://fotki.yandex.ru/) as a free photo hosting provided by the Yandex – the largest Russian search engine also plays a role of a "platform" for informal associations of amateur photographers.