As Russia prepares for a new SOPA-like Internet restriction law that comes into effect on Nov. 1, the country’s communications ministry has gone a step further towards ensuring that the web doesn’t harm child welfare: It has proposed banning anyone under 18 from using Wi-Fi networks in public. Under the regulation, those failing to meet the proposed measure would face a fine ranging from 20,000 rubles to 50,000 rubles ($640 to $1,600), Vedomosti reported Thursday.
Besides being nearly impossible to enforce, the rule, proposed by the state telecom regulator Roskomnadzor, casts an excessively wide net. Teenagers aren’t kids, not like the 13 year olds that the FTC is concerned are being tracked by social media sites and apps in the US, or the three year olds that doctors in Britain now say should be banned from watching television. In Russia, people can obtain permission from regional authorities to marry and get a motorcycle license at 16.