Russia not to tighten control over Internet: Minister

Russia, unlike China, is not planning to tighten control over the Internet.

Updated: Jan 17, 2011, 13:55 PM IST

Moscow: Russia, unlike China, is not planning to tighten control over the Internet, country`s Minister of Telecommunications and Mass Communications Igor Shchegolev said during a live radio programme.

"Certainly we do not make any steps to this effect, this is our position of principle. We are not going to introduce any restrictions in this issue," he told the Echo Moskvy radio station yesterday.

"Russia is just planning to make several amendments in the legislation that regulate the activities in the Internet, because the World Wide Web is a quite new phenomenon.”

"We will act gradually. We are working with the State Duma over a new legal notion of Internet media," the minister pointed out.

The minister noted several important events in the Russian segment of the Internet in the previous year. He emphasised the success of the RF domain zone despite all scandals triggered by the launched registration of Cyrillic domains.

"Since it was a pioneering project, we have some problems on its development," he noted.

He added that according to the expert estimates, less than one percent of Cyrillic domain names were challenged which he said to be "a quite good indicator".

The new domain zone performs one of its main functions, namely a greater number of Russian-speaking Internet users. The growth of the Russian adult Internet audience almost equalled with the growth of the young Internet audience after the launch of the RF domain zone.

The minister also stressed positive results of launching a common portal of public services. "About 73,000 passports have already been processed through the Internet not only in Moscow, but also in other regions," he said.

The Russian authorities are also to create a special e-mail service between citizens and public servants. "A basic special e-mail service was developed and is being tested," the minister underlined.