The Parliamentary Research Center said last week that the protection plan was unconstitutional and needed more time to be amended. This news kept the sparks of hope in the hearts of the people to prove once again that the opinions of the public opinion and the expression of criticism are effective, even against the plan that the proponents claimed that 7,000 hours of expert work had been done on it and some sought its approval. They were a path; Of course, it should be emphasized that everything is not completely over yet, and as it seems, only the so-called “protection plan” has been abandoned, and now a new plan is on the agenda of the parliament.
The head of the Parliamentary Research Center published a letter last week to the head of the Joint Commission for the Study of the Protection Plan, listing the many shortcomings of the text of the plan and requesting more time to amend it. It seems that the review of the research center is related to all the different versions of the protection plan, including the plan written by the Ministry of Communications, and even the version of the “Issa Zarepour” team, which he believed had resolved the concerns, had major problems for the center.
What is the latest status of the project?
In the letter of the Research Center of the Islamic Consultative Assembly on reducing institutional social capital, creating instability in economic laws and regulations, endangering investment security, excessive interference in various aspects of people’s lives, encouraging elites to migrate, ambiguity and lack of transparency in provisions and process And… are mentioned as serious problems of the protection plan.
Based on this, it seems that the case of the current protection plan, which was launched by people such as Fayyazi, Zakani and Momen Nasab, was renamed many times and criticized by its critics. Looking for corruption and prostitution Sung, closed. Therefore, we have to wait for a new version from the Parliamentary Research Center headed by Babak Negahdari, who has replaced Zakani at the head of the Research Center with Qalibaf.
At the last meeting of the Joint Commission for the Study of the Protection Plan (today, January 26), members of the Parliamentary Research Center announced that they still want to regulate cyberspace and stressed that they are ready to hear the views of MPs to amend the plan.
Finally, at the same meeting, it was announced that the name of the protection plan had been completely changed, and one of the designers of this initial plan – a plan that can now be said to have failed – also announced on Twitter that the plan to protect users’ rights and cyberspace services (new name) Which the parliament put on the protection plan) has been completely abandoned and now a new version with a newer name called “cyberspace regulation system plan” is on the agenda.
It is not yet clear exactly how different the new design is from the previous design, but given the research center’s opposition to the old design, we will probably see a different design than the previous design.
But now we have to ask ourselves the question, why did the protection plan come here and be peeled off? Where did the story start and what was the process that went on until today? What is the end of this story? Let’s review everything from the beginning, useful and concise, and to do this we have to go back to three years ago.
A fringe plan that started in November 1997
In the fall of 1997, for the first time in the tenth parliament, a plan entitled Organizing social media It was unveiled, the draft of which was reviewed by the Cultural Commission.
According to a member of parliament at the time, the plan had 33 articles, but some of its articles were not directly related to the messengers. At the same time, an informed official in the Twelfth Government told Digito that the plan was written without the slightest expert operation by the Parliamentary Research Center.
This plan had many similarities with the current conservation plan. The formation of a 13-member supervisory board, the conditionality of the activities of domestic and foreign media affecting the appointment of the supervisory board, the management and control of the international Internet gateway by the armed forces and the establishment of a domestic media protection fund are among the similarities between the two plans.
However, the plan was referred to the Parliamentary Research Center due to its widespread objections. Then in 1998, with new changes, it was put on the agenda of the Cultural Commission, but due to the opposition of the parliament and the government of the time with this plan, it did not go anywhere.
Of course, the designers of the project did not sit idle during this period and took measures to advance their goal. For example, in August 1998, the Institute of Islamic Culture and Thought held a promotional scientific chair on the plan to organize social media. Seyyed Abbas Moradi, one of the authors of the conservation plan, was one of the organizers of the meeting.
Eleventh Assembly and Presentation of the Preservation Plan
As the tenth parliament came to an end, the plan was forgotten, but it was not until the eleventh parliament came to power with a majority of principled representatives that, after a while, the plan resumed.
The members of the 11th Majlis, looking at the previous plan and the opinions of cyberspace experts, prepared a draft plan, which was announced on August 17, 2016, and was placed on the agenda of the Cultural Commission for consideration.
This plan on cyberspace was darker than the previous version, but due to the opposition of the government and the then Minister of Communications, it was not on the agenda of the parliament until June 1400.
“Mohammad Javad Azari Jahromi”, Minister of Communications of the Twelfth Government in the last Your media interview with Digito He openly criticized the protection plan, arguing that it would take away the powers of the president and the ministry of communications, and would limit the use of basic services.
In the midst of the 13th presidential election, an interview with “Reza Taghipour”, The current chairman of the Joint Commission to review the conservation plan It was reported that he had announced that a plan on cyberspace would soon be made public that foreign media outlets would be blocked unless they accepted Iranian law.
Although Taghipour denied the news at the same time, less than two weeks later, with the end of the presidential election, a bill was introduced in parliament that criminalized the activities of individuals and organizations in the blocked media and filtered foreign media. Required to adapt to the conditions of the country; That is, exactly the same denied news flowed. This plan was signed by 40 representatives and Taghipour’s signature was also seen at the end of this plan.
This project is entitled «Protection of users’ rights In cyberspace and organizing social media “in 20 articles and in the summer of 1399 and in early July 1400 MPs were scheduled to vote on the bill under Article 85.
In this plan, any person who violates the blocking measures in illegal media is punished; The Ministry of Communications was required to provide the necessary measures to authenticate users in the country’s cyberspace, and foreign media outlets had to use an Iranian company as a representative to continue operating in the country.
The plan was met with a serious response from the media, social media users, experts and the public, and eventually led to changes in the plan.
Unveiling of the new version with renaming and several items
A few days after the content of the protection plan was revealed, several members of parliament, including Taghipour, announced that the protection plan was obsolete and that a plan entitled “Protecting the rights of users And cyberspace application-based services have replaced it.
In the new design, some expressions were renamed and the use of filter breakers was no longer a crime. But the main and important drawbacks remained. The proponents and designers of the plan also sought the principle of eighty-five for the plan to be considered and voted on outside the open court of the parliament.
Simultaneously with these efforts, a campaign was launched to oppose the plan. This campaign will take less than 20 days 500 thousand signatures The cyberspace activist and the public reached out, but nonetheless MPs in 6 مرداد 1400 They voted to review the protection plan under Article 85 of the Constitution.
According to this principle, the plan of protection outside the open court of the parliament and in a special commission with the presence of members of parliament is reviewed and implemented as a pilot law for a period of three to seven years.
Criticism of the plan and concerns about it continued, to the point that some members of parliament submitted a request to the presidium of the parliament to cancel the review of the protection plan in accordance with Article 85. But again the deputies with such a request Opposition کردن.
The passage of the protection plan under Article 85 of the Constitution has raised concerns about a plan that has been far from transparent and secretive from the outset. At the same time, the desire of people to emigrate from the country increased more than before.
But the criticism of experts, Cyberspace activists And media pressure caused all the meetings of the Joint Commission to Review the Safeguard Plan to be broadcast live.
A plan that was declared unconstitutional
Based on the votes of the MPs, the plan to protect the rights of cyberspace users was formed in a joint commission with the presence of MPs from various commissions. The commission held 10 sessions to review the plan, of which more than half were spent Development of internal regulations Became a commission.
Subsequent meetings also provided little opportunity for criticism from the private sector and businesses, and most of the criticism was answered by the chairman of the commission. This issue was even criticized by some of the representatives present in the joint commission.
In the ninth session, the deputies announced the proposed version of the Ministry of Communications for the protection plan, and finally it was decided to submit the plan to the Parliamentary Research Center to take into account the views of the government, the private sector and other agencies. To be referred.
Proposal Although the Minister of Communications somewhat alleviated the concerns of businesses, a review of its content shows that some of the negative and dark points of the plan have not changed.
In recent weeks, too Parliamentary Research Center It hosted experts, private sector activists and representatives of various institutions to receive their opinions.
Finally, as mentioned, the Parliamentary Research Center, after receiving comments and reviews from members, concluded that the plan was unconstitutional and needed more time to be considered. This issue has been mentioned by sending a letter to the chairman of the joint commission to review the protection plan. The letter, however, refers to the commission’s efforts to draft a new version of the conservation plan, which carries with it a new name, and the full text will probably be published soon.
The need to organize cyberspace is not hidden from anyone, but the path chosen by some members of parliament did not seem right and had created many concerns in the heart of society.
Experts in the field have repeatedly stressed that a plan should be put on the agenda at the appropriate time, with the advice of all experts, to address both governance concerns and help businesses. It is hoped that the Parliamentary Research Center will prepare a useful, transparent plan, far from any secrecy, without haste and considering all aspects, and put it to the vote of experts.