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Sweeping Purge of Runet Will Be Carried out before New Year

Sweeping Purge of Runet Will Be Carried out before New Year
17.12.2013

The State Duma Committee on information policy on Friday, December, 13 approved bill of pre-judicial blocking of sites suspected of extremism. As “Vedomosti” reports, the first reading of the bill is appointed on December, 17 and amending can pass in one day. Sources of the edition also note that the project has high chances to be accepted.

During consideration of the bill member of the committee, member of United Russia Roman Chuychenko expressed fear that provokers who will purposefully place extremist records for blocking of sites can use bill in their purposes. The chairman of the committee Alexey Mitrofanov noticed that the committee wouldn't think out special protection for such cases as there is criminal article.

The bill assumes pre-judicial blocking of sites with extremist information on the requirement of the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation or his deputies. According to the author of the bill - deputy Andrey Lugovoi - it will allow to avoid abuses. Illegal information which is subjected to blocking inludes appeals to mass riots, extremist activity, kindling of the national and religious discords and participation in mass events which are held with violation of rules.

Sites have to be blocked right after address of the prosecutors of Federal Supervision Ageny for Information Tehnologies and Mass Communiations in which special division for communication with the State Office of Public Prosecutor will be created.

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From editorial board: It doesn't make sense to discuss the bill itself, briefly it allows to close every political and even simply information site at the slightest pretext.

For example, notorious "kindling" can be treated very widely as it is done in the Russian ourts. Though if some competitive right of the sides is at least supposed in ourts, what to do in ase of extrajudicial punishment? Whom and what ould be proved?

Invitation to participate in mass events which are held with violation of rules is separate question.

For example, only today the judge reeived my complaint on a ban of the authorities of Moscow to hold procession and meeting on November, 7 whih is neessary to say is absolutely illegal. Today, I will remind, is December, 16. Derees on supposed "violations" were already issued to people in absentia (!), the Moscow City Court is going to listen to appeals. How it is possible to issue derees on "violations", if the court hasn't established yet, whether the action was lawful or not?

Though it turns out that now we won’t be able even to report about this lawlessness on penalty of closing. The authorities illegally forbade communists to arry out procession and meeting on November, 7th, on the day of October revolution and mass media won't be able even to report about it without risk to be brought to answer for invitation to "unauthorized meeting".

Actually the authorities not simply legalize arbitrariness, but also cancel constitutional law of mass media to report about this arbitrariness. The main thing is that they close opportunity of mass media even to challenge the decision of the authorities as now there is no place to challenge. Though, likely, it is theoretically possible to achieve the right to publish meeting announcement on November, 7 somewhere by next summer.

Actually there’s only one way out for real, not booked by the power media - "information offshore". Which rescues from arbitrariness of Federal Supervision Ageny for Information Tehnologies and Mass Communiations, but, unfortunately, it doesn't rescue from technical blocking of access to sites in "sovereign" zone.

Certainly, there are proxy servers which are located abroad, also "offshore" sites can open own proxy servers for access to them, access to them will also be closed and we will open new proxies... The differene is that the national search engines like Yandex and so on will already cease to look for us. That is quality of access and reah will inevitably decrease. That, probably, quite suits the Kremlin, after all in Soviet period "Voice of America" was audible through "jammers", but quality of a sound was already lower than admissible.

Here it is the way we live...

natoly Baranov, editor-in-hief of FORUM.msk

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