Russian Roskomandzor requires authority to check the relatives of mass media owners

Russian ministry of communication (MinCom) and Roskomandzor have developed and proposed new amendments to Russian law allowing this authority to check relative relationships of persons, who owns or controls mass media in Russia. Proposed amendments provide the Roskomnadzor with access to federal data base of registered acts of civil status.

According to explanation note to the draft law, Russian mass media law deprives foreign persons of any form of control over founder and/or redaction of mass media or broadcasting organisation, if such control directly or indirectly enables to own, manage or make decision in a way the foreign person is interested in. Relative relationships can be considered a form of indirect control over mass media. Therefore, in order to execute Russian law, the Roskomnadzor and MinCom require access to data base of registered acts of civil status.

If the owner of mass media, operating in Russia, has “relative relationships with foreign citizen, it is not a sign of indirect control, but in such case there is potential opportunity of such indirect control, therefore each case is to be considered individually”, – underlined deputy of Russian minister of communication Alexey Volin.