Medvedev: we will not allow to cut Russia off the Internet

Prime Minister Medvedev at a meeting with television channels, December 5, 2019    Today, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev gave an interview to representatives of television channels and radio stations. Some participants in the meeting dared to ask him uncomfortable questions, including about the regulation of Yandex, the sovereign Runet and the blocking of YouTube.    Medvedev said that YouTube will continue to work in the country: “Nobody is going to close anything, and YouTube has been and will remain, and those who earn on YouTube will be able to earn. Although this does not depend on us, but on the policies of YouTube itself. You know, it is also changing, they are making it more strict both in terms of copyright, and in terms of commercial agreements, and a number of other aspects that are related to the commercialization of the Internet environment. ”      About Sovereign Internet Answering the question of the blogger Anastasia Ivleeva (3rd place in the list of the most successful Russian bloggers according to Forbes), the Prime Minister said that the sovereign Internet law is not aimed at banning something: “Firstly, bans are ineffective , and they are easily bypassed on the Internet. And secondly, the purpose of the bill is completely different – that we are not cut off from the global network, if someone comes to mind. Usually in this case they say: “Well, who is going to cut us off there?” This, as it was said in one Soviet film, is philistine talkers, because in fact they can cut it off from anything. ”    Medvedev believes that the United States has the opportunity to isolate Russia from the World Wide Web: “When our relations, for example, with the Americans became complicated, absolutely seriously – we know this, there were publications about this – the issue of cutting us off from the payment verification system was discussed. This is actually what is called a blow under the breath, it is, in fact, a declaration of war. Nevertheless, it was discussed. Why then not wrap this faucet connected with the Internet, all the more we know that domain name registration, a number of other functions, due to how the Internet has developed, are carried out in the United States of America. We are not sure that at some point, in order to make us “pleasant,” they will not disconnect us from anything. Moreover, we are on the verge of not just the Internet, which is connected with domestic needs, but also the Internet of things. And the Internet of things is technological processes. This is generally a dangerous thing. If someone cuts someone off, then, in fact, you can stop anything. A station, say, an energy or something else, an airplane flight. Anything you can imagine. ” Therefore, this bill, I’m sure, will not affect anything like that, but still it will allow us to protect our interests. ”    The law on “sovereign runet” (a package of amendments to the laws “On Communications” and “On Information”) entered into force on November 1, 2019. It obliges telecom operators to install equipment from Roskomnadzor so that the regulator can centrally manage traffic routing and block access to prohibited resources. So far, the law has not started to work, since all legal acts have not been adopted. It is not finally decided which equipment will be installed on the networks of operators.     State control over Yandex As you know, recently Yandex reached an agreement with the state to introduce formal state control over the company. Yandex has promised to establish a Public Interest Fund, to which it will transfer part of its managerial functions. The company will coordinate with the Fund the consolidation of 10 percent or more of its shares, the transfer of intellectual property and personal data of users. The fund will also be able to temporarily suspend the general director of the Russian Yandex.    The Public Interest Fund is actually managed by the presidential administration.    On December 20, 2019, Yandex shareholders will be offered a vote for the decision. If the majority is in favor, the Fund will be launched.    Such a scheme satisfied the representatives of the state, and the owners of Yandex, and the market: after the adoption of the “soft” state control scheme, Yandex shares have grown significantly.    Regarding this situation, the Prime Minister said that this is a “one-time story” and more such stories will not be repeated with foreign investors. Moreover, the need for the introduction of state control in this form was associated with the appearance of the draft law of the deputy Gorelkin on the nationalization of Yandex, so the government had to quickly “resolve” the situation that had a fever in the market: “It was still about a special situation related to the adoption of the law which is still in preparation. There was one bill that was discussed both at the site of the State Duma (this was a little feverish market) and in the Government. I personally personally convened a meeting to make a balanced bill that would allow taking into account state interests, for companies (in fact, infrastructure, but in the virtual world) like Yandex are piece-sized and very important, Medvedev said. – M