Russian Lawmakers Pass Bills That Could Block Social Media Sites — And Stifle Dissent : NPR

The lower chamber of Russia’s parliament approved a number of bills on Wednesday that restrict online content...


The lower chamber of Russia’s parliament approved a number of bills on Wednesday that restrict online content.

Dmitry Astakhov/Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images


hide caption

toggle caption

Dmitry Astakhov/Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images

The lower chamber of Russia’s parliament approved a number of bills on Wednesday that restrict online content.

Dmitry Astakhov/Sputnik/AFP via Getty Images

Russian lawmakers have approved a range of new measures that could further stifle dissent and allow tighter restrictions on online content — including blocking websites like YouTube and Twitter.

One bill would allow for the blocking of foreign websites that it says “discriminate” against Russian media. A second law would allow it to levy large fines against companies that don’t take down content banned in the country.

A third law would establish jail terms for those convicted of making slanderous comments online or in the media. A person found guilty of slander could face up to two years in jail and be fined up to 1 million rubles (about $13,300), Reuters reports.

The bills were passed by Russia’s lower house, the State Duma. If they become law, as expected, they would mean that Russia could block websites like YouTube, Facebook and Twitter that label content produced by Russian state media outlets as being just that. Under the legislation, Russian authorities will be able to block or slow down such sites.

Since August, Twitter has been labeling the accounts of Russian media outlets as being “state-affiliated,” angering Russia, Reuters reports. President Vladimir Putin has called for Russia to come up with its own social media platforms to gain greater control.

Kremlin critics, including opposition leader Alexei Navalny, have used Twitter and YouTube to reach millions of Russians, bypassing censorship on state television.

When the draft bill to allow blocking foreign sites was introduced last month, Navalny tweeted: “Great. Let them pass it as soon as possible, the whole country will finally install a VPN” — a tool that can be used to evade government censors.

Human Rights Watch notes that Russian authorities already have a number of ways to restrict online content: “The 2019 ‘sovereign Internet’ law for example, allows the government to use technology to track, filter and reroute Internet traffic, raising concerns over the arbitrary and extrajudicial blocking of legitimate content.”

Alexei Makarkin, deputy director of the Center for Political Technologies in Moscow, told Bloomberg that the moves are in anticipation of the incoming Biden administration.

“They are preventively crafting a shield against the support of Russia’s opposition from Joe Biden that they expect,” he said. “We are ready — that’s what they are demonstrating to America now.”

NPR’s Lucian Kim contributed to this report from Moscow.



Source link

COMMENTS

Name

Africa,728,Americas,3907,Art & Culture,14226,Arts,6334,Arts & Design,1525,Asia,3114,Automobile,415,Baseball,502,Basketball,401,Books,3726,Business,5167,Celebrity,2593,Cricket,605,Crime,121,Cryptocurrency,1389,Dance,587,Defense,796,Diplomatic Relations,2451,Economy,1009,Editorial,260,Education,1118,Elections,291,Energy & Environment,2989,Entertainment,22086,Environment,3469,Europe,4063,Faith & Religion,205,Family & Life,775,Fashion & Style,3086,Finance,18979,Food & Drink,3576,Football,1027,Games,74,Gossip,10245,Health & Fitness,3917,Health Care,871,Hockey,181,Home & Garden,881,Humour,950,Latin America,49,Lifestyle,16229,Media,490,Middle East,1399,Movies,1581,Music,2486,Opinion,2732,Other,11226,Other Sports,4868,Political News,11236,Political Protests,2280,Politics,17282,Real Estate,1687,Relationship,63,Retail,3070,Science,2473,Science & Tech,9487,Soccer,159,Space & Cosmos,276,Sports,11401,Technology,3269,Tennis,505,Theater,1562,Transportation,275,Travel,2438,TV,3529,US Sports,1434,Video News,3531,War & Conflict,1026,Weird News,954,World,15563,
ltr
item
Newsrust: Russian Lawmakers Pass Bills That Could Block Social Media Sites — And Stifle Dissent : NPR
Russian Lawmakers Pass Bills That Could Block Social Media Sites — And Stifle Dissent : NPR
https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2020/12/23/gettyimages-1227730372_wide-30fcf2041434b77e064d145bb0f91b4f1c6bd91d.jpg?s=1400
Newsrust
https://www.newsrust.com/2020/12/russian-lawmakers-pass-bills-that-could.html
https://www.newsrust.com/
https://www.newsrust.com/
https://www.newsrust.com/2020/12/russian-lawmakers-pass-bills-that-could.html
true
732247599994189300
UTF-8
Loaded All Posts Not found any posts VIEW ALL Readmore Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS PREMIUM CONTENT IS LOCKED STEP 1: Share to a social network STEP 2: Click the link on your social network Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy Table of Content