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Russian Parliament to Consider an Expanded Anti-Piracy Bill
25.09.2013 15:44
Russian Parliament to Consider an Expanded Anti-Piracy Bill

A new bill allowing for websites to be blocked if they contain any copyright-infringing content was introduced in the Russian parliament on Tuesday, expanding an earlier law against film piracy.

      The earlier law, which came into force in August, allowed copyright holders to seek the blacklisting of websites they accuse of hosting pirated films and television shows without contacting the uploader or obtaining a formal court ruling on the legality of the content. It also allowed the banning of whole IP addresses, and it could harm thousands of law-abiding Internet users and web pages who happen to share the IP adress with the blacklisted webistes.

      The new bill would allow banning by URL – the individual address of a webpage – and would ease sanctions for “informational intermediaries” such as hosting providers and search engines involved in providing access to copyright-infringing content. The bill also tends to soften the blacklisting rules.

      However, the new bill's future still remains unclear as a senior lawmaker on Tuesday called the bill “premature” and said similar legislative changes were to be included in the upcoming amendment package for Russia’s Civil Code.

      The bill was also criticized by both copyright holders and advocates of Internet freedom. A spokesman for Russia’s unregistered Pirate Party slammed the draft for still allowing bans by IP address, while a representative for the National Music Industry Federation disapproved of the softening of blacklisting rules.

      A petition to cancel the law against film piracy gathered 100,000 signatures in August, mandating a formal governmental review of the proposal. However, neither the Cabinet nor the Russian parliament has since indicated any willingness to accede to the petition’s demands.

Author: Julia Alieva

Tags: Russian Internet anti-piracy law Internet piracy Russian legislation  

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