By Drew Wilson
News is surfacing that the Russian Ministry of Culture is gearing up for a new offensive against Internet piracy. According to both Russian and French reports, if a website owner receives a complaint of copyright infringing material, then the owner has 24 hours to remove it or face a fine.
One of the reports comes from Glavnoe (Russian) where the report says that that the website owner is not only responsible for the removal of the offending content within 24 hours, but is also responsible for preventing the spread of that same content. If the content isn’t remove, says the report, then website owners could face a fine of 3,000 to 5,000 USD for individuals and 30,000 to 50,000 USD for entrepreneurs.
We decided to cross reference this report and found that Numerama is reporting the same thing (French). The report adds that even the web hosting company could be liable for the infringement of its clients. The report notes that the fines range from 75 to 12,500 euros. Unfortunately, this is in conflict with the Russian report, so we don’t know for sure what the fines are exactly at this point in time.
If hosting companies are also liable, this could mean trouble for a lot of websites within Russia that are either search engines or cyber lockers – both of which are prevalent in that country. At this point, the law is merely proposed, so we don’t think it’s being enforced at this point in time. We’ll try to keep an eye on this as more reports surface.
Drew Wilson on Twitter: @icecube85