Russian parliament passes Internet censorship law

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Russia’s parliament this week passed a controversial bill that would allow the government to unilaterally blacklist and shut down any website deemed illegal. Draft bill 89417-6, an amendment to Russia’s Act for Information, targets any sites hosting child pornography, images of sexually abused children, or any materials that would encourage minors to use drugs or commit suicide.

If signed into law by President Vladimir Putin, the amendment would create a federal agency charged with policing the web and maintaining a blacklist of banned sites.

The proposed legislation has come under fire from civil rights activists and internet service providers, who see it as a direct threat to free speech and a slippery slope to overt government censorship.

Full Story: Russia’s parliament approves web censorship law