Moscow Court Blocks Access to Online Content Under New Antipiracy Law

Sites carrying copyrighted material face a complete shutdown unless they comply with the verdict.

MOSCOW -- In the first verdict under Russia's recently enacted antipiracy legislation, a Moscow court has blocked access to several TV series illegally offered for viewing by local websites.

The court has ruled in favor of the rights holder, the online video service Now.ru, controlled by Gazprom Media, a media wing of the natural gas giant Gazprom. Under the verdict, the websites Rutor.org and Turbofilm.tv are supposed to block access to several popular TV series, including Interny (Interns) and Univer. Novaya Obshchaga (University. New Dorm).

In accordance with the new law, Now.ru initially filed a complaint, which led to a temporary blocking of the websites. The opportunity for rights holders to request blocking of allegedly illegal content before a court verdict is made, is one of the new law's most prominent features.

Under the law, if the owners of Rutor.org and Turbofilm.tv don't comply with the verdict and continue to provide access to the pirated material, they each will face a complete shutdown.

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