Anti-internet piracy law will be applied to more areas of intellectual property, Sergei Naryshkin, speaker of the State Duma lower house of Russia's parliament, confirmed on Monday at parliamentary hearings devoted to intellectual property protection.
The anti-internet piracy law which came into force August 1 protects author’s rights in the event of cinema, television and video products are illegally shared online.
“Steps will be taken to protect the rights of authors of works of literature and of computer programs,” Naryshkin said.
State Duma deputy Robert Shlegel proposed amendments to the anti-piracy law which expands it to cover all intellectual property – music, texts, software and other copyrighted media. Shlegel told journalists on Monday that the bill was ready and would be submitted September 17. Apart from expanding the types of content covered by legislation, the law introduces pre-judicial dispute settlement. This means that plaintiffs who contact the court demanding injunctions have to provide proof that they have tried to settle the matter on their own before attempting litigation.
The bill also carries less harsh requirements for operation of internet companies. For instance, it determines the notification procedure for an information intermediary. The new version of the bill lost the controversial article regarding identifying pirated intellectual property through IP-addresses – internet companies have unanimously opposed this procedure stating that blocking IP addresses can take down web resources which have nothing to do with piracy, seeing as how several websites can share one IP address.
If these amendments pass, copyright holders will have to file not IP addresses for websites with allegedly pirated content, but the exact address of the illicit webpage. Web hosts will also be immune to demands of copyright holders to pay compensation for emotional distress or damages or to confiscation of physical storage devices in case third parties infringe on intellectual property rights, as “application of such measures contradicts the whole concept of freeing information intermediaries from liability.”
Moreover, injunctions can be applied only if an information intermediary have failed to take measures to remove infraction after being informed by the copyright holder.