Russian Government Demands All Foreign Press Outlets Register For The Privilege Of Delivering News To Russia

from the get-in-the-sea,-Putin dept

The Russian government sure loves its registration. If anyone wants to do anything involving the written (and/or broadcasted) word in Russia, the government wants to know who you are. That makes it easier to find you should you displease the Russian government and/or its bear-riding autocrat.

It’s so great to be part of the new New World Order. Gone are the days of the Soviet Union and its direct control of the nation’s press outlets. We’re living in a new era of quasi-, mostly-mob-fueled-capitalism in Russia. And with it comes… the direct control of the nation’s press outlets.

The Russian government has demanded all bloggers register with the government in order to continue blogging. The government has also demanded all Wi-Fi networks be registered with the government. So it goes without saying all domestic press is registered with the government, but we’ll say it anyway since unregistered press outfits are being hit with hefty fines for not playing ball with their overlords.

That takes care of the domestic “problem.” But what about all those pesky extranationals whose printed words might be somehow troublesome to the Russian Republic? Well, Putin et al have a solution whipped up to keep dirty foreigners from apprising Russian citizens about the sad state of their country under its autocratic leadership.

Under the new law, media publications must obtain a permit and register their media outlet with Russian media watchdog, Roskomnadzor. […] The law was proposed to better regulate foreign media outlets who have contracts with local distributors. The new law is supposed to make sure all of these contracts are brought under the review of the state.

As expected, the new law has its critics, both foreign and domestic. And, as expected, the Russian government has not a single fuck to give about critics of its media control.

The new law governs all printed media distributed by non-citizens, bringing it in line with the domestic product. The fines, however, aren’t all that hefty (although exchange rates may make them particularly painful for some countries). They’re even less hefty if foreign press outlets refuse to pay them, which seems like a totally legitimate option when faced with illegitimate use of government power.

Those with deeper pockets should pay the nominal fees (which range from $23 to $470, depending on the size of the corporation) and keep pumping info not directly controlled by the Russian government into the eyeballs and brains of Russian citizens. Those that can’t pay the fees — or are willing to stand on principle — should continue to do the same thing, only without cutting checks to a lousy government that can’t stand having an informed populace.

As for American tech companies, they too should extend a digital middle finger to Roskomnadzor when it starts demanding content the Russian government finds offensive be removed or blocked. You’re not the boss of me is the operative phrase here and it should be delivered as frequently — and as petulantly — as possible.

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Comments on “Russian Government Demands All Foreign Press Outlets Register For The Privilege Of Delivering News To Russia”

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ECA (profile) says:

Lets see...

Parts of the EU,
!/2 of the middle east..
Iv said before, that the Internet is the most democratic location in the world.. How many Countries want this??
the only reason to Shut down/restrict the net, is the idea that you CANT monitor it all. Even monitoring Just your own nation is a hassle.

that would be an interesting idea that the ISP’s are responsible for Their OWN sections and monitoring. And more fun to get the Corps that Dont sell access to be UNDER the cover/protection/control of the ISP’s…so they can be monitored/controlled/regulated easier.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Censorship

"What idiots. They should outsource their censorship to "private" companies as the good old US of A does."

I am curious which private companies have been contracted by the US government to censor what people see on which websites. In addition, what specifically is being censored and for what reason(s).

I doubt you have anything to post other than a bunch of talking points.

Anonymous Coward says:

As far as spying on own citizens, the usa is the first and the worst of the supposed democratic countries. It has led to others doing the same yet still condems the likes of China, Russia, Iran etc for doing it as well. The ‘follow my lead’ seems to be the norm now with ordinary citizens only being on the receiving end, illegal and terrorist actions being ignored because pursuing the perpetrators is too costly, too lengthy, and too difficult in comparison. Basically, what is happening is what has happened before and tyranny is the order of the day, under disguise, as is usual. The main way to keep doing this is to control the Internet and restrict use by ordinary people and prevent news from being spread. Exactly what is going on now while at the same time removing the rights and freedoms from citizens to keep this momentum going. I dread the future. The 1% have what they have been after for decades and because of the way governments are controlled, it will be almost impossible to stop, let alone reverse

OldMugwump (profile) says:

Are they going to build their own Great Firewall?

If not, I don’t really see the point of all this.

I mean, there’s this "Internet" thing. With that, anybody in Russia can read the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal if they like (well, paywalls aside…)

More importantly, they can read all the Russian news they like, as long as the sites are located outside Russia.

Anonymous Coward says:

Does anyone ever bother to ask why, after almost three decades of free speech and press freedom, does Russia suddenly start moving in the opposite direction? The answer obviously isn’t due to changes in leadership. Could the timing have anything to do with Russian media companies (and those perceived to be) being required to register as foreign agents in NATO countries, along with other restrictions?

Zof (profile) says:

This is unheard of!

How dare they demand that….

"The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has released a public notice setting October 12, 2018 as the initial deadline for “United States-based foreign media outlets” to file reports with the FCC. The reports are required pursuant to the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 (NDAA) and must contain certain specified information. The question whether an entity is subject to the NDAA’s reporting obligation requires a multi-faceted inquiry, and we believe that the universe of entities that must file reports with the FCC is likely to be relatively limited. Howev…"

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