Elaine Díaz Rodríguez

Elaine Díaz Rodríguez

A man surfs the Internet from his home on Amargura and Mercaderes streets, one of the sites selected for the pilot test for home Internet connection, in the neighborhood of Old Havana, in December 2016. Photo: Joaquín Hernández / Xinhua.

New Cuban regulations consider hosting websites on foreign servers a violation

If a Cuban citizen residing in the country decides to open a blog on WordPress, Medium or any other free Internet service, he/she could be fined up to 1,000 pesos (CUP), around 40 USD, according to the exchange rate for individuals. This is what articles 68 and 69 of the new Decree-Law 370 of 2018 say for the computerization of Cuban society. The decree, approved by the Council of State without going through the National Assembly, states that "hosting a site on servers located in a foreign country, which is not like a mirror or replica of the main site on servers located in national territory," is a violation. In conversations with two public officials of the Ministry of Communications, through the telephone number that appears on their website, both confirmed that the resolution applies to individuals. "If I have a blog on WordPress and I don’t want to put it on a national server, will I be fined?" we asked. "It is a violation and can be fined if it is detected," they replied. In Cuba there is only one blog hosting service, the Reflejos platform, organized by the Computer and Electronics Youth Club, which explicitly censors content for...

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