Russia: Enactment of Russian Internet Blacklist Bill

Russian State Duma, the lower house, passed Internet Blacklist Bill (the Bill) on July 11, 2012. According to the Bill, the authorities can shut illegal websites over Internet or list the Internet resources with illegal contents in the Blacklist under the regulation of government or block such resources, which include contents endangering the children’s physical and mental health, promoting children pornography and instigating suicide and drug-taking on the websites, web pages and URLs or other “extreme” information. The Bill provides that if a website in the Blacklist can remove the illegal contents within 24 hours and restrict children’s browsing, then it will not face the risk to be blocked.


In view of Medvedev, Chairman of United Russia Party and Prime Minister, the general principle is that Internet should be liberal but it still should be subject to a series of regulations, and many regulations are pending for formulation. According to Medvedev, it is impossible to regulate everything on Internet on the one hand while it is also impossible for everything to overtop the laws on the other hand. Furthermore, when the people’s fundamental rights and freedom are valued, people should also be entitled to shun away from the negative impact of harmful contents. Medvedev also believes that the validity of copyright is another principle to follow on Internet. However, such copyright should exert its functions by specific rules on Internet rather than general rules in daily life.


After all, various incompliance and hazardous information dwelling is a reality on Internet, and only by existing verified procedures can such things be eradicated, just as pointed out by Medvedv. The newly-passed laws in Russia have demonstrated that judicial procedures will play a very important role. Relying on these laws, we are expected to have a ordered, normal, civilized and legal network environment.


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