18 November is the doomsday of the Ukrainian Internet
Thanks to the laws, which were adopted on 18 November, Ukraine swiftly joins the ranks of such countries as Saudi Arabia and China, where the control over the Internet is very strong.
All MPs, who voted for the drafts of the laws “On the activities in the sphere of informatization” and “On telecommunications”, made a splendid present to the power. The Internet, one of the not numerous spheres, where the independent mass media can exist, becomes less and less free.
According to the first law draft, every existing mass media may be recognized as violating laws and may be closed.
According to the second draft, the total monitoring of the Internet users is introduced by means of special equipment installed in the providing companies (naturally, at the expense of the providers).
All this, together with the successful attempts of the state to put the domain .ua under the control of special services, confirms that the power prepared well for the pressure on the Internet-editions during the coming election. So, we want to give our compliments to the oppositional MPs, who voted for these drafts.
(maidan.org.ua, «The Poltava oblast media club”, No. 56, 21 November 2003)
Today, on 18 November, the Law of Ukraine “On the activities in the sphere of informatization” has been adopted in the first reading.
We have already written about this law. On 3 July the conference “Control and censorship endangers the Internet in Ukraine” was held, at which the representatives of Internet mass media explained why this law might not be adopted even in the first reading.
Alas, the communists and the Socialist Party of Ukraine almost unanimously ignored all warnings and voted for this law, which would give the opportunity to the power to suppress the Internet-editions. The behavior of communists is not very surprising: for instance, the committee of communist Kriuchkov, use to promote the laws that help the power to destroy its opponents, and recently this fraction cooperates with the pro-President majority. Yet, the actions of socialists are strange.
However, there is a slender hope that the law draft will not be adopted in the present reactionary version.
If the law “On telecommunications” would be adopted today too, then this day would become the doomsday of the Ukrainian Internet.
(«Maydan», 18 November 2003, maidan.org.ua)