6 May 2014

Russian blogs to be subject to new rules

3:29 pm on 6 May 2014

Bloggers in Russia with a daily readership of more than 3000 will have to register with the Russian government's media watchdog, under a new law signed by President Vladimir Putin.

Failure to comply with the new legislation could lead to fines of several thousand dollars.

Two computers

Photo: AFP

The BBC reports that the legislation which takes effect in August obliges social networks and blogging websites to store data about their users activity for six months and to make information available to the authorities when requested.

Failure to comply with the new law could lead to fines of several thousand dollars.

President Putin has also signed into law a bill banning the wilful distortion of the Soviet Union's role in World War II.

Swearing banned in films, TV and theatres

Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law banning all swearing in films, television broadcasts, theatres and the media.

Offenders will face fines - as much as 50,000 roubles ($US1400) for organisations, or up to 2,500 roubles ($US70) for individuals.

Where disputes arise a panel of experts will decide exactly what counts as a swear word.

Books containing swear words will have to carry warnings on the cover.

Russia's Vesti news website says that, according to sociologists' research, swearing is common in two-thirds of Russian companies.

The law will take effect from 1 July and will not apply to cases of swearing at performances before that date.

A leading pro-Putin film director and now MP, Stanislav Govorukhin, was one of the new law's architects.

The BBC reports the law harks back to the conservatism of the Soviet period, when the Communist Party required artists and writers to avoid "decadent" Western fashions and to stick to traditional values.

Traders who fail to give consumers warnings about swearing in videos or other audiovisual products will risk having their licences withdrawn.

It is not clear whether the ban on swearing in the media will also extend to Russian users of international social media such as Twitter and Facebook.