Safe Internet League CEO: “Vkontakte is a socially important web site. There could be no blacklisting of it without prior scrutiny”


«It was clear right from the start that putting the Vkontakte social network on the official Russian Internet Blacklist and partially blocking access to it was a technical malfunction, one that can happen to any system. Nevertheless, some journalists exploited the incident to make headlines», claimed Safe Internet League CEO Denis Davydov commenting on reports of the network’s IP address being blacklisted.

Roskomnadzor, the agency operating the Blacklist, later issued a statement saying the address was blacklisted by mistake, which was promptly fixed.

«Let me remind you of one important aspect: there is a memorandum of cooperation signed by the Safe Internet League and Vkontakte pledging to eradicate child pornography online. But even if someone did manage to skip illegal content into some of its pages, no way it could have triggered blacklisting the whole social network», argued Mr. Davydov refuting claims that the action might see the whole network blocked: «First of all, Vkontakte is a socially important web site, no action can be taken against it without prior scrutiny. Secondly, it is a complex Internet resource comprised of separate web sites (user accounts), with respective owners responsible for their contents. In case content illegal under Federal Law no. 139-FZ is found on one of these web sites, it is the account that can be blocked, not the entire social network».