27 Feb 2019 14:26

Officially registered online media to delete fake news to avoid blocking - amendments to bills

MOSCOW. Feb 27 (Interfax) - The amendments to the bills on fake news and on information expressing disrespect of society and state proposed by Leonid Levin, the head of the relevant State Duma committee, introduce the principle of "the right to make mistakes."

"The preliminary notification procedure is being introduced for officially registered online media in order to give them the chance to delete false information of public significance themselves, promptly fix their mistake and thus avoid being blocked by Roskomnadzor," Leonid Levin, chairman of the State Duma Committee on Information Policy, Information Technologies and Communication, told Interfax on Wednesday, commenting on the amendments he had submitted to the second hearing of the bills on the prevention of the dissemination of fake news and information disrespectful to society and the state.

Levin also said, "there are plans to exclude the traditional media, whose regulation is currently sufficiently effective against fakes, from the bill's effect."

Changes to the bills on information disrespectful to society and the state are also proposed, Levin said.

"In accordance with them [the bills], owners of resources will be given time, namely, 24 hours to delete it [the information] and avoid being blocked," he said.

Additionally, "if a citizen fulfils Roskomnadzor's demands and deletes the content within the established timeframe, he will not be subjected to administrative liability, if it is the first violation of this nature," Levin said.

"Such wording will make it possible to exclude users who have published such information accidentally or gave the wrong assessment of its nature from the law's effects," Levin said.

"I hope the committees and the State Duma will support these amendments as meeting the principle of 'the right to make mistakes," which is important for the preservation within society of freedom of speech and freedom of information dissemination," he said.

The State Duma passed at first reading a package of bills on liability for fake information and insulting state symbols and society in late January.