Amendments to the Federal Law “On Protecting Children from Information Harmful to Their Health and Development” introduced by Federal Law No. 139-FZ of 28 July 2012 (the “Law”) have recently come into force, while others are set to be effective this autumn.

As of 30 July 2012, each producer or distributor of “informational production” must place a corresponding informational symbol indicating the appropriate ages for children to be exposed to a viewing or listening programme.

From 1 September 2012, the following requirements will apply:

  • Programming material has been divided into four viewing/listening age groups for children: up to age six; ages seven to 12; ages 13 to 16; and older than 16. A fifth category includes material to which children are forbidden to be exposed.
  • In line with this, television stations must display a corresponding informational symbol in the corner of the TV screen at the beginning of each show, as well as following each commercial break.
  • Internet site owners can choose to display corresponding informational symbols. In this case, they determine classification themselves.
  • the expert rating procedure has been clarified.

The Law also stipulates a number of amendments to Federal Law No. 126-FZ “On Communications” and to Federal Law No. 149-FZ “On Information, Information Technology and Protecting Information”, which come into force on 1 November 2012.

[Federal Law No. 139-FZ “On Amending the Federal Law ‘On Protecting Children from Information Harmful to Their Health and Development’ and Separate Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation”, dated 28 July 2012]