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Russian Duma adopts 'web blacklist' bill

July 12, 2012, 16:43 UTC+3

Russia's lower house of parliament passes the bill in its second and third final readings

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Russian lower house of parliament votes to approve the new information bill. It will create a blacklist of websites, starting November 1. The legislators say the new law will be used to crack down on harmful or illegal content, and will shut down the resources that contain child pornography, drug promotion material or advise on suicide. The bill also gives the government the power to force those websites offline without a trial. If abusing material is removed from the web page, the site can be struck off the blacklist. The original proposal, which has been under review in the Duma since last week, implied that only “harmful information” would be censored. The phrase was seen vague and provoked criticism of censorship from the country's most popular websites. Social network Vkontakte, Yandex searching engine and Russian LiveJournal has spoken out against the draft law, Russian Wikipedia went offline for 24 hours. The phrase was amended in the final reading.The bill must be approved by Russia's upper house of parliament and signed by President Vladimir Putin to become law.

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