Position of the Democratic Club No. 40 - Dissemination of racist and totalitarian ideologies on Internet
During public debates organized by the Democratic Club, many participants were pointing to the public expression of racism and other non-democratic ideologies on various WebPages even in the discussions managed by well-known servers that enjoy a large following.
The Czech Republic has laws on the books that classify public dissemination of such ideas as a criminal act. Here we mean par. 196 of the criminal code (violence against a groups as well as against individuals); par.198 of the criminal code (defamation of a nation, ethnic or racial group or people of special creed); par. 260 of the criminal code (support or propaganda); par. 261 (public expression of support), par. 261a, (public denial or discrediting). According to our opinion, the public press, radio and television broadcasters observe these laws. However on a number of WebPages, breaking these laws is done not only freely but often in a vulgar form which is unacceptable by the public.
One cannot conclude from the language or the spirit of the law that these activities are exempted if they appear on the Internet. So far we do not know of a single case of criminal procedure against either the authors or owners of these pages.
For these reasons we demand, that the appropriate governmental organs inform the owners of the WebPages that it is their responsibility to follow the above mentioned laws, which includes editing and supervising the contributions to the discussion. Should the view prevail that the current laws are not sufficient, we recommend that our representatives and senators amend the existing law.Prague 8 January 2009
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