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Belarus Bans Use of Foreign Websites

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the technological-island-nation dept.

Censorship 361

bs0d3 writes "A new law in Belarus prohibits people from using 'foreign' websites. The law requires that all companies and individuals who are registered as entrepreneurs in Belarus use only domestic Internet domains for providing online services, conducting sales, or exchanging email messages. The tax authorities and the secret police are authorized to investigate violations."

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Geek perspective: websites (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565592)

Belarus is a dictatorship with a history of human rights abuse. All bets are off.

I bet the US (2, Funny)

future assassin (639396) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565710)

will be right over to liberate the Belaruse people.... right over....any time now... oh they only have trees....

no iran and / or NK may be the next place to get (3, Funny)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565782)

liberated!!

Re:I bet the US (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565892)

Belarus is an oil producing and refining nation. 50% of recovered oil is exported. Very large oil shale deposits exist in Belarus.

The imagined threat to oil rich nations by the US is a fiction you indulge as a well trained malcontent. People modding this troll up do damage to slashdot.

Re:I bet the US (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38566144)

You said it yourself 50% is exported. What happened to Iraq, is that they stopped exporting.

Re:I bet the US (2)

viperidaenz (2515578) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566190)

Belarus is reliant on Russian oil, They can't manage on their own. They also transport Russian oil and gas further west to the EU. Do you think Russia would like USA to invade one of their biggest oil exports?

Re:Geek perspective: websites (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565742)

Also: A place where my job is not likely to be outsourced to.

Keep up good work!

Re:Geek perspective: websites (5, Insightful)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565778)

Once SOPA passes, and US companies start to offshore both domain names and hosting, how long before a law like this passes here? Don't say it could never happen. A lot of "nevers" have happened in the past few years. I never thought US Citizens could be dissapeared on US soil either.

Re:Geek perspective: websites (4, Insightful)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565940)

Criticisms of SOPA or anything else will fall on deaf ears when you lose all perspective and compare the US to a repressive dictatorship.

Re:Geek perspective: websites (5, Insightful)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565996)

As a non-American, the US is viewed as repressive, & we all assume the dictatorship bit will come soon (not that it's really needed). More & more the US is looking like 1920's Germany.

Re:Geek perspective: websites (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38566078)

uhggg.. don't remind me

Re:Geek perspective: websites (4, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566122)

As an American, I can assure you that you are absolutely correct.

Re:Geek perspective: websites (2, Informative)

roman_mir (125474) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566162)

On Decembe 31, 2011, Obama gave a black eye to the citizens of USA by signing NDAA with provisions that basically establish martial law and turn Obama into a dictator. [slashdot.org]

It's only a matter of time before using a foreign website will be an offense that marks a US citizen as a terrorist.

No foreign bank wants to deal with US citizens because of Patriot Act. When SOPA or something similar passes, foreigners will start avoiding online US clients and businesses.

Re:Geek perspective: websites (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566124)

Apparently Belarus is a presidential republic [wikipedia.org] , just like USA

Re:Geek perspective: websites (1)

hitmark (640295) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566242)

Are you sure it never happened before Patriot?

Re:Geek perspective: websites (5, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565818)

Belarus is a dictatorship with a history of human rights abuse.

Well, you certainly don't minsk words.

Re:Geek perspective: websites (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565970)

He doesn't mince them either.

Re:Geek perspective: websites (3, Funny)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566052)

whoosh [wikipedia.org]

Re:Geek perspective: websites (3, Funny)

Existential Wombat (1701124) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566186)

Is this a load of .bs ?

Re:Geek perspective: websites (-1, Troll)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565864)

The US is an oligarchy with a history of gradual erosion of its founding principles. All bets are off.

Re:Geek perspective: websites (2)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566224)

The US is an oligarchy with a history of gradual erosion of its founding principles.

It wasn't that gradual. The ink wasn't dry on the US constitution before US president began engaging in policies and behavior that were counter to founding principles. It's most obvious in foreign policy and wars and imperialism, but you can see it clearly in domestic policy too.

Fact is, the US constitution isn't nearly the perfect document that you would be led to believe. There are holes you could drive a truck through, not to mention outright hypocrisy. Don't forget that a lot of slaves in the colonies chose to fight against George Washington in the Revolutionary War because it seemed ridiculous to them to fight and die for a regime that embraced slavery.

Phew (-1)

Threni (635302) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565594)

For a minute there I thought this was about ToysRUs.

Thank you, Belarus (5, Insightful)

Samantha Wright (1324923) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565606)

Thank you for providing us anti-SOPA people with a rhetorical example of an internet rights disaster that is less politically sensitive than China. (Also, it may be time for another revolution.)

SOPA (5, Insightful)

kurt555gs (309278) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565616)

This is different from post SOPA USA how?

Re:SOPA (3, Insightful)

impaledsunset (1337701) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565884)

SOPA is a tool. If it corresponds to something in Belarus, it's the dictatorship itself.

The ban on foreign websites as described is just a use of that tool and, yes, an example of how SOPA might be used.

The possibilities that it opens are frightening, but it's not as bad as what's going on in Belarus already. And the Great Firewall of China might be a better example of how SOPA might be actually used.

Trajic and misguided... (2)

Coldmoon (1010039) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565626)

This will do nothing more than work to isolate the Belorussians and stifle their growth going forward. Shortsightedness leading to stagnation in the name of security...

Re:Trajic and misguided... (1)

joebagodonuts (561066) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565760)

Like the people in power give damn. Look at North Korea.

Re:Trajic and misguided... (1)

Gerzel (240421) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565852)

Their growth forward most likely means a move to post-dictatorship. If you are the dictator or on his side this is a bad thing.

Sensationalist Title! (0)

Fireking300 (1852630) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565628)

This basically prevents residents of the nation to buy / maintain a foreign TLD. It does not prevent people from accessing them.

Re:Sensationalist Title! (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565638)

"Additionally, the Law states that the owners and administrators of Internet cafés or other places that offer access to the Internet might be found guilty of violating this Law and fined and their businesses might be closed if users of Internet services provided by these places are found visiting websites located outside of Belarus and if such behavior of the clients was not properly identified, recorded, and reported to the authorities."

From TFA

Re:Sensationalist Title! (2, Insightful)

Fireking300 (1852630) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565652)

I overlooked that. Alright people downvote me!

Re:Sensationalist Title! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38566128)

Replying to undo accidental mod.

Re:Sensationalist Title! (2)

aenigmainc (739876) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565896)

I guess there won't be any WOW players in Belarus

Re:Sensationalist Title! (5, Funny)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566004)

Fortunately the country's benevolent leadership has created "Worlds of Belarus", which provides Belarusian youth with hours of endless online fun!

Activities include marching, buying bread, and standing in line. As you gain experience levels, you can compare how short Belarusian lines are compared to those in corrupt western states.

Re:Sensationalist Title! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38566016)

Very misleading. I read the original in Russian, it says:
1. It prohibits use or foreign registered websites for sales and services to Belarus people by Belarussian companies. No one prohibited Facebook or Google.

2. Internet cafe owners could be held liable if they provide access to the list of forbidden (restricted) websites. Not for violation of this law.

Re:Sensationalist Title! (1)

mbkennel (97636) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566098)

So, certain foreign registered websites are illegal to use. Internet cafe owners will be prosecuted if they tell their clients which ones they are so they can avoid breaking the law. So they will all break the law!

a diabolical plan! SPECTRE would be proud.

RTFA (0, Redundant)

the linux geek (799780) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565646)

"Additionally, the Law states that the owners and administrators of Internet cafés or other places that offer access to the Internet might be found guilty of violating this Law and fined and their businesses might be closed if users of Internet services provided by these places are found visiting websites located outside of Belarus and if such behavior of the clients was not properly identified, recorded, and reported to the authorities. The Law states that this provision may apply to private individuals if they allow other persons to use their home computers for browsing the Internet."

Clueless Government (2)

assertation (1255714) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565632)

Sound like a country determined to be poor.

Re:Clueless Government (1)

d4fseeker (1896770) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566028)

The government seems to figure they rather be poor than dead, seeing that a lot of 2011's uprisings were successful.

Re:Clueless Government (2)

assertation (1255714) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566130)

Governments that make sure their people have their basic needs met and a future can get away with a lot. Think of "bread and circuses" with the ancient Romans......or TV and beer with modern America :). That is something a lot of greedy, power hungry regimes haven't figured out yet.

Dumbshits. (4, Insightful)

kheldan (1460303) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565634)

If you live in that country you may as well just stop using the internet completely then, since it's effectively not the internet anymore, just an extremely small walled garden. Anyone want to take bets on exactly how many weeks this continues before they rescind it? A move like this couldn't be good for any country's economy.

Re:Dumbshits. (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565786)

Do not worry. All violations of the law deemed convenient to the national economic interest, or carried out by suitably favored people, will simply be ignored for the sake of practical efficiency.

Next time unlucky activist visits foreign NGO website? Visit from secret police...

Re:Dumbshits. (1)

gman003 (1693318) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565796)

just an extremely small walled garden.

More like an extremely large LAN with the most restrictive firewalls possible ("deny * from *" is a firewall, right?

Re:Dumbshits. (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565888)

You assume Lukashenko cares about something other than his own personal fortune and control over his country. This is not the case.

Re:Dumbshits. (2)

tgd (2822) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566174)

If you live in that country you may as well just stop using the internet completely then, since it's effectively not the internet anymore, just an extremely small walled garden. Anyone want to take bets on exactly how many weeks this continues before they rescind it? A move like this couldn't be good for any country's economy.

Maybe I misread it, but it sounded to me like Belarus companies have to use Belarus domains -- you can't run a site on ilovebelarus.com if you're a Belarus company, but a Belarus citizen can use any non-Belarus sites they want on any URL they want.

Re:Dumbshits. (1, Insightful)

Pax681 (1002592) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566176)

If you live in that country you may as well just stop using the internet completely then, since it's effectively not the internet anymore, just an extremely small walled garden. .

apple fans will LOVE it! :P

Belurusan World Web (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565642)

Wow, someone doesn't understand World Wide Web do they? Why don't they just block all access out side of Belarus and run it like a big LAN.

Re:Belurusan World Web (2)

anomaly256 (1243020) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565926)

Because the law says websites, not ftp or irc servers! Teehee..

Belarus? (-1, Flamebait)

Cytlid (95255) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565644)

You've spelled "America" wrong.

Re:Belarus? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565874)

No. You are stupid.

Re:Belarus? (1)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565978)

Yea, just the other day I went to www.baidu.cn and the secret police arrived and arrested me.

Seriously, what are you smoking?

They're not banning people from using foreign site (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565654)

They're banning businesses from using foreign sites to operate. By not doing this, a large percentage of their economy will most likely be going to foreign interests.

Re:They're not banning people from using foreign s (4, Informative)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565692)

Wrong. From TFA: "Additionally, the Law states that the owners and administrators of Internet cafés or other places that offer access to the Internet might be found guilty of violating this Law and fined and their businesses might be closed if users of Internet services provided by these places are found visiting websites located outside of Belarus and if such behavior of the clients was not properly identified, recorded, and reported to the authorities. The Law states that this provision may apply to private individuals if they allow other persons to use their home computers for browsing the Internet."

If you're not allowed to go to an internet cafe and visit slashdot.org without being identified and reported to the authorities, that sounds pretty close to being banned from using a foreign site to me.

Re:They're not banning people from using foreign s (2)

ZorinLynx (31751) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565752)

I get the impression that this only applies to commercial transactions... So visiting Slashdot alone probably won't run afoul of the law, but donating money to Slashdot might.

Either way this law is ridiculous. Trade is a good thing; they're basically cutting themselves out of the global market.

Re:They're not banning people from using foreign s (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565806)

It's unknown how accurate the summary in TFA is, but if my quote above is correct, that sounds like a lot more than just commercial transactions. Of course, it could be a stupidly-written law that meant to only apply to commercial transactions, but that's irrelevant as the law's text is what's important, but again, the accuracy of the article is unknown; it's common for "journalists" these days to totally screw up basic facts.

Re:They're not banning people from using foreign s (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565756)

You are not banned from using foreign sites, however you are banned from allowing others to use foreign sites on your computer. It is stated quite clearly in the law. The reason for this is not as clear.

Re:They're not banning people from using foreign s (1)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565812)

Control. If everyone is breaking the law, you can arrest anyone at any time for any reason.

Re:They're not banning people from using foreign s (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565814)

The reason for this is not as clear.

Presumably it's the same reason why typewriters were so strictly controlled in the 'good old days'; so they can send the secret police around to whoever is found accessing an evil foreign web site and arrest the owner of the computer.

Tea Party wants that here (-1, Flamebait)

backslashdot (95548) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565656)

This is exactly the type of laws that protectionists and tea party activists want. They hate foreigners, and want to force people not to interact or trade with them.

Not really, troll (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565696)

Not really, troll.

Re:Tea Party wants that here (0, Flamebait)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565702)

You've got to be kidding; this is the most idiotic thing I've read all day.

The Tea Party is indeed full of nincompoops, but protectionism is the exact opposite of what they want; they want anarchy with giant corporations and their private armies making all the rules, much like Somalia. It's all about "the free market" and "The Invisible Hand", which just devolves into "the biggest bully wins", but to conflate this idea with protectionism and hating foreigners is just idiotic.

Re:Tea Party wants that here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565804)

They are allowed aa little contradiction. No reason they cant be against regulation in general for their economic policy while still wishing to oppose unamerican influence socially. As political contradictions go, that barely even registers.

Re:Tea Party wants that here (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565858)

I can assure you the politicians controlling the Tea Party want nothing to do with any regulation or protectionism. You might find some common people who identify as TPers who might be in favor of some protectionism, but they don't control anything. As soon as one of the politicians tells them "protectionism is bad! regulation is bad!" they'll change their minds.

Re:Tea Party wants that here (1)

LordLimecat (1103839) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566194)

Apparently its strawman day on slashdot. I wait with bated breath to see the next one.

Re:Tea Party wants that here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565712)

Citation please, or shall I just label this 'Incredible BS'?

Re:Tea Party wants that here (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565730)

The Tea Party does not want this here.The Tea Party is for a free and open internet and open source software! The Tea Party does not back SOPA! The Tea Party is not racist. The Tea Party is for a strong economy! Are you from china or any other country with a repressive internet policy?

Re:Tea Party wants that here (1)

olderphart (787517) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565810)

I see that protectionism is something you are against, as am I. Hail fellow, well met!

Do you agree with me that no moral case can be made for further impoverishing workers in poor countries to further enrich incredibly rich (by world standards) US union members?

It's not that I don't get the politics of protectionism, I just have this little conscience problem when I consider the big picture.

Re:Tea Party wants that here (1)

houstonbofh (602064) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565822)

This is exactly the type of laws that protectionists and tea party activists want. They hate foreigners, and want to force people not to interact or trade with them.

If you are going to spout mindless drivel like this, please use the term "tea-baggers" so we can filter you more easily. Thanks!

Re:Tea Party wants that here (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565908)

You don't have to lie about the Tea Party to make it look bad. They can do that quite well themselves.

I like the approach (0)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565732)

I think this is a hell of an approach for a country to ensure that it's business world doesn't try to offshore and outsource it's services to evade taxation.

I think using a country TLD is also a source of national pride. The .com may be international, but not all businesses are international in nature.

I was going to register a .ca myself, but I soon learned it's far more expensive to get a .ca domain than a .com. A .ca will have to wait until I can afford it, in the meantime the http://domain.com/tld-code/ [domain.com] approach will work, particularly as the concern is more to provide language options that country/region options.

Re:I like the approach (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565770)

That didn't make any sense at all. They can still outsource manufacture and operations if they like, just so long as their website runs with a Belarussian TLD and hosting. It's simple censorship being mislabelled as patriotic economics.

Re:I like the approach (1)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565816)

Censorship? How is it censorship? They're not preventing anyone from doing business, only setting the rules for doing business. That's well within their right.

The US-managed .com, .net, and .org spaces scare the shit out of a lot of people, especially with SOPA on the table.

Re:I like the approach (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565826)

Censorship? How is it censorship? They're not preventing anyone from doing business, only setting the rules for doing business. That's well within their right.

If you like it so much, could I suggest you go and live there?

Re:I like the approach (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565834)

Censorship? How is it censorship? They're not preventing anyone from doing business, only setting the rules for doing business. That's well within their right.

They're making it effectively illegal to access non-Belarussian websites. How is that not censorship?

Re:I like the approach (1)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565890)

I don't see it that way. The way I see it, they're saying if you want to do business with our citizens, you must register your business nationally, abide by our laws, and use our TLD so people know your legally allowed to do business here.

Unless they're stopping foreign businesses from registering TLD sites or starting local offices that can register the TLDs, I see NOTHING like censorship in the proposal. The world is NOT America's oyster.

Re:I like the approach (1)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565904)

It's a hell of a lot more rational way of doing what SOPA tries to do.

Re:I like the approach (1)

king neckbeard (1801738) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566046)

And what SOPA tries to do IS censorship. TFA says that individuals accessing a foreign websites will be guilty of a misdemeanor, and that letting someone access foreign websites on your computer may leave you liable. That is straight up censorship, and it's a completely idiotic law. SOPA is idiotic too, though.

Re:I like the approach (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565924)

Accessing a website is not the same as doing business.

Re:I like the approach (1)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565962)

Being intentionally obtuse while making no arguments won't win you any supporters.

Re:I like the approach (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38566182)

There's nothing obtuse in what I said. The law bans access to non-Belarusian websites. Everything you've said in support of the law has been on the basis that it requires businesses and business transactions follow Belarusian law. I was point out that the two things are wildly different. That really wasn't so hard to figure out was it?

But I suspect you knew what I meant, it's just easier to drag this into semantic wordplay than to admit your viewpoint is illogical.

Re:I like the approach (1)

sirdude (578412) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565788)

I can only imagine that you're yet to recover from your New Year's binge.

Re:I like the approach (1)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565828)

Ah, the ad hominem attack. The favourite defense of someone with nothing useful to say.

Re:I like the approach (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565988)

ahh... the ol "ad hominem attack" whinger. if you dont like personal attacks, what the hell are you doing on slashdot? you're a pussy. how about that for "ad hominem". why don't you just call it personal attack anyway? oh i know probably cos its the only way you can satisfy your sorry ass ego with bullshit latin that you've merely taken from other slashdot whingers who are yet to lose their virginity. btw belarus kicks ass! ftw

Re:I like the approach (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565914)

"Also, the Law authorizes the government to establish and update the list of banned websites to which access should be blocked by Internet providers. The Law mentions pornographic websites and those that contain information of an extremist nature as examples of those to be blocked"

  From what I've seen of the Belarus regime, this website would be extreme just for criticising the law and banned. This law is about censorship and controlling the population hiding behind protectionism.

Re:I like the approach (1)

msobkow (48369) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566024)

Look, having a .com, .net, .org, or .edu does not mean you are legally entitled to do business everywhere in the world. There are still local laws you have to follow.

Mandating a country-code TLD registration and a local business presence is a perfectly valid requirement for doing business with the citizens and organizations of a country. And it provides a clear indicator to users of the internet as to whether a website owner IS complying with local law.

I'd MUCH rather see this approach become standard than SOPA or the Chinese approach to censorship.

Re:I like the approach (1)

LighterShadeOfBlack (1011407) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566232)

I'd MUCH rather see this approach become standard than SOPA or the Chinese approach to censorship.

False dichotomy. It is not necessary that we choose between these; there still remains the option of an open Internet, despite what some would have you believe.

Alexander Lukashenko (5, Informative)

sirdude (578412) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565754)

For those who are unaware, Belarus is ruled by a turd named Alexander Lukashenko [wikipedia.org] . He's been their president since 1994 and initially increased presidential term limits from the standard five years to seven and later removed presidential term limits altogether.

Some of his memorable moments include:

  1. He warned that anyone joining an opposition protest would be treated as a "terrorist", adding: "We will wring their necks, as one might a duck".
  2. Addressing the "miserable state of the city of Babruysk" on a live broadcast on state radio he stated: "This is a Jewish city, and the Jews are not concerned for the place they live in. They have turned Babruysk into a pigsty. Look at Israel—I was there and saw it myself ... I call on Jews who have money to come back to Babruysk."
  3. "My position and the state will never allow me to become a dictator, but an authoritarian style of rule is characteristic of me, and I have always admitted it. You need to control the country, and the main thing is not to ruin people's lives."

... and so on [wikiquote.org] .

In other words, such stories while shocking are, IMO, hardly surprising ...

Re:Alexander Lukashenko (0)

dkleinsc (563838) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566094)

"My position and the state will never allow me to become a dictator, but an authoritarian style of rule is characteristic of me, and I have always admitted it. You need to control the country, and the main thing is not to ruin people's lives." -Alexander Lukashenko

"I told all four that there are going to be some times where we don't agree with each other, but that's OK. If this were a dictatorship, it would be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator." - George W Bush

I'm not suggesting Lukashenko is a great guy, just that politicians in developed nations aren't demonstrably different than their counterparts in former Eastern Bloc countries.

is Belarus (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565824)

some form of Slavic word for 'idiot'?

smart move (1)

r00t (33219) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565832)

Imagine this were the USA and Western Europe situation: there is no www.google.com, yro.slashdot.org, www.facebook.com, or similar. Everything you do in in the *.cn domain, with IP addresses assigned by the Chinese, and physically located in China. Would that be a good situation for the USA or Western Europe?

It's no different for Belarus.

(bummer, because I **like** the USA having more control over Belarus)

worldoftanks.com becomes worldoftanks.by ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565856)

I wonder how this will affect the World of Tanks and other computer games put out by Wargaming.net [Wikipedia [wikipedia.org] ] since their development center is in Minsk, Belrus.

We're Number Two! (4, Funny)

Bob9113 (14996) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565878)

We're Number Two! We're Number Two!

Yeah, Baby! We are now only the second stupidest country on the planet regarding writing Internet laws that completely misunderstand how the Internet works. Thanks Belarus! You've shown that our politicians are not quite the most ignorant twits in positions of power on Earth!

Re:We're Number Two! (1)

king neckbeard (1801738) | more than 2 years ago | (#38565944)

Don't be so loud, our politicians might take that as a challenge and try to retake first place

Re:We're Number Two! (1)

PPH (736903) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566206)

Too late. The clown car that is the GOP candidacy already considers that gauntlet to have been thrown down.

Nothing to discuss here... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38565894)

Title: Belarus Bans Use of Foreign Websites
From headline (I am not even talking about article itself): The law requires that all companies and individuals who are registered as entrepreneurs in Belarus use only domestic Internet domains for providing online services...

Nothing to discuss...

this is a great law (1)

holophrastic (221104) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566096)

I actually like this, which is weird, because I wouldn't have thought so. But it makes sense that in order to benefit from all of the various business-related incentives that your country may provide, including your business licence in the first place, that you continue to spend your money domestically.

I run a business in Canada, and I use Rackspace out of the U.S.A.. I've very happy with Rackspace, as anyone should be, they are indeed fantastic in every way. But I feel guilty for not remaining in Canada, and do wish that they'd open a Canadian datacentre. Recently, I've found a worthy Canadian competitor, and simply cannot justify the transitional effort.

But I'd appreciate such a law. Sure it would cause momentary distress for me and for my business, but I think it would improve competition amongst my competitors, and also attract foreign suppliers -- Rackspace included.

Re:this is a great law (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38566202)

Wow, you are a retard. And I would like you state that you DO NOT represent what this country stands for.

If you have a "guilt trip" over your own affairs, maybe fix them so you don't have a guilt trip rather than imposing your ill thought out ideas on others.

BTW, the laws states quite clearly that ANYONE accessing foreign hosted websites is to be tracked and reported as such activity is ILLEGAL. I can't believe someone would even support such tripe idiocy.

Re:this is a great law (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38566250)

It's protectionism pure and simple. Protectionism usually backfires and hurts the economy of the protectionist country.

Re:this is a great law (1)

macraig (621737) | more than 2 years ago | (#38566254)

You actually think this is intended to legitimize national incentive programs? You apparently live in a cloud yourself.

This is about CONTROL, and not in a good way. If the domain and physical servers are IN Belarus, then the government can monitor, tap, censor, and otherwise control everything that resides on or passes through them. I expect the proximate goal is to stop dissidents from using the Internet to communicate, collaborate, and organize.

The actual law (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38566160)

The actual law says that if you trade in Belarus, your servers should physically be in Belarus (pretty scary, if you ask me), and they should be "properly registered" (whatever this means) with the state. This registration requirement may or may not force you to use their ccTLD, I cannot find any information on this.

It also says that if you let others to use your network, you must identify your users and keep logs for one year. You also must not let people access stuff that is illegal to access. I think this one is close to what they have in some parts of Westen Europe.

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