Social network definition may be added to Russian blogger law
MOSCOW, March 12 (RAPSI) - Deputy Chairman of the Federation Council Committee for Constitutional Legislation and State Building, Konstantin Dobrynin, has suggested introducing the terms “blogger” and “social network” to Russian law in order to clarify the provisions of the controversial law on bloggers, TASS reports.
The explanatory note to the amendments drafted by Dobrynin states that the law is supposed to protect the rights of internet users and to regulate data distribution and exchange online and take into account social networking activity.
The bill would expand the Law on Information, Information Technology and Information Protection with the new terms, “social network,” “profile/account/blog,” “independent blog,” “blogger” and “popular blogger.”
According to the definition, a social network is “an online website that provides individuals/users with an opportunity for self-presentation as well as the development of social networks by registering accounts/blogs and their continuing coordination.”
Blogger is “an individual who registered an account on a social network or owns an independent blog.” Popular blogger is an owner of a social network account or an independent blog that “contains open-access information” that has over 3,000 online views a day.
The current law on bloggers entered into force on August 1. It requires individuals whose blog attracts a daily readership of more than 3,000 to take on the full responsibilities of mass media outlets. President Vladimir Putin signed this bill into law on May 6 last year.
The current law obliges the owners of the specified personal websites and social networking pages to confirm the reliability of information, to act in accordance with election campaign rules (election silence, ban on publishing poll results in the last five days before election day), not to publish private information about other people, and to indicate age limits for users.
Registered bloggers would also be required to provide their first, last and middle names on their pages, as well as contact data for filing complaints.
Bloggers who fail to comply with these rules will face fines of up to 500,000 rubles. Finally, bloggers will have to pay taxes on their advertising income, which is currently not controlled and hence not taxable.
At the same time, the current law has received a controversial review by the expert community.