MPAA Happily Gets Into Bed With Russian State Censor Agency... To Protect Copyright!

from the the-friends-you-keep dept

Roskomnadzor is the Russian "telecommunications regulator" or "watchdog," but it could just as easily be described as the Russian internet censor, because that appears to be a large part of its role in the country. In the past, we've written about Roskomnadzor blocking all of Wikipedia over a single reference to hashish (really) and also a plan to block all of CloudFlare because the company made it difficult for Russia's internet censorship plans to work. Earlier this month, Roskomnadzor made news for blacklisting a Vice article, claiming that it would encourage shoplifting.

So, who better to support such a censorship regime than... Hollywood! The MPAA has now proudly signed an agreement with Roskomnadzor to cooperate on protecting copyright online. The linked article is unfortunately horribly written. The title implies that the MPAA represents the government of the United States (while sometimes true in practice, that's not how it's supposed to work...) and then provides frightfully few details on what the agreement really is), beyond "protect copyright!"
The memorandum reflects the principles and rules of self-regulation in the interaction of rights holders with internet facilities, essentially protecting copyright on the internet.
That feels like something the reporter pulled straight from a press release and didn't bother to check what it meant. Still, the MPAA getting into bed with the Russian state internet censor should raise some pretty serious questions. The Russian government has, somewhat infamously, been known to use copyright law to intimidate and silence government critics. The government also has used SOPA-like laws to encourage spying on users.

And yet, this is the same MPAA that claims that one of its core principles is preserving free speech. Perhaps they just mean in the US? Those in Russia are on their own, apparently, because the MPAA is on the side of the government censor. Or, perhaps the reality is that the MPAA has no problem with censorship anywhere, so long as it's censorship on behalf of the MPAA.
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Filed Under: blocklist, censorship, copyright, roskomnadzor, russia, sopa
Companies: mpaa


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2016 @ 9:39am

    Remember when they said US should be more like Russia, Iran, etc in terms of being able to censor stuff on the Internet?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2016 @ 10:28am

    "The title implies that the MPAA represents the government of the United States"

    Or the title tacitly acknowledges that the U.S. government represents the MPAA, and not the people, and so what's the difference between the MPAA representing the U.S. government and the U.S. government representing the U.S. government. They're the same thing, whatever the MPAA says the U.S. government agrees to anyways.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2016 @ 10:29am

    Re:

    So lets just simplify the formality and let the MPAA directly speak on behalf of the U.S. government instead.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2016 @ 10:40am

    Let's close the loop shall we?

    Here is the list of 2016 recipients of MPAA donations to Federal Candiates:

    https://www.opensecrets.org/pacs/pacgot.php?cmte=C00139519&cycle=2016

    If anyone finds their reps there, how about asking them why they accept funding from an organization flaunting their links with and doing business with the internet censorship arm of the Russian State?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2016 @ 10:59am

    In Soviet Russia, RIAA censors you

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    bob, 22 Jun 2016 @ 12:20pm

    No the MPAA just got fed up trying to continue it's facade of free speech in the US.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. icon
    John Fenderson (profile), 22 Jun 2016 @ 1:24pm

    So now we know

    So now we know that the MPAA are communist sympathizers. How far they have evolved from the old days of blacklisting.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. icon
    DannyB (profile), 22 Jun 2016 @ 1:58pm

    Re:

    But it does in the US too.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2016 @ 2:57pm

    I for one can't wait for Putins troll army and our regular trolls to form a Voltron of fail in the comments.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2016 @ 5:54pm

    Considering how Dodd was such a fanboy of China's online regime, this isn't a stretch at all...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Jun 2016 @ 6:54pm

    Alles Klar, Herr Kommissar?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12. identicon
    Kirion, 23 Jun 2016 @ 1:25am

    Funny enough, there is a fairly similar reaction in Russia. As in "Why the state agency is enlisting to help capitalists from the potential enemy country?"

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13. identicon
    Wendy Cockcroft, 23 Jun 2016 @ 5:52am

    Re:

    Because state capitalism has been practiced in Russia since 1918. Basically, they've never had a problem with Capialism, Comrade, as long as they themselves were the ones doing it.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14. identicon
    Sergei, 23 Jun 2016 @ 4:06pm

    here is a post on RKN web site. https://rkn.gov.ru/news/rsoc/news39730.htm Nothing about MPAA being a representative of the USG. It's Russian SOPA in action, and Hollywood and music majors had no hesitation to explore it in full.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Jun 2016 @ 6:27pm

    Russian MAFIAA

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 27 Jun 2016 @ 5:28am

    principles and rules of self-regulation in the interaction of rights holders with internet facilities

    So it's deep packet inspection, 3 (4,5,6!?) strikes and legal threats all over again. The classic tried (and failed) trifecta.
    You gotta give it to the MPAA & RIAA, at least they're consistent if nothing else.
    It might even stand more of a chance in Russia with it being closer in policies to China than the west.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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