A socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of nationwide and international conventions; exhibitions; and business, public, youth, sporting, and cultural events.

The Roscongress Foundation is a socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of nationwide and international conventions; exhibitions; and business, public, youth, sporting, and cultural events. It was established in pursuance of a decision by the President of the Russian Federation.

The Foundation was established in 2007 with the aim of facilitating the development of Russia’s economic potential, promoting its national interests, and strengthening the country’s image. One of the roles of the Foundation is to comprehensively evaluate, analyse, and cover issues on the Russian and global economic agendas. It also offers administrative services, provides promotional support for business projects and attracting investment, helps foster social entrepreneurship and charitable initiatives.

Each year, the Foundation’s events draw participants from 208 countries and territories, with more than 15,000 media representatives working on-site at Roscongress’ various venues. The Foundation benefits from analytical and professional expertise provided by 5,000 people working in Russia and abroad.

The Foundation works alongside various UN departments and other international organizations, and is building multi-format cooperation with 173 economic partners, including industrialists’ and entrepreneurs’ unions, financial, trade, and business associations from 78 countries worldwide, and 188 Russian public organizations, federal and legislative agencies, and federal subjects.

The Roscongress Foundation has Telegram channels in Russian t.me/Roscongress, English – t.me/RoscongressDirect, Spanish – t.me/RoscongressEsp and Arabic t.me/RosCongressArabic. Official website and Information and Analytical System of the Roscongress Foundation:roscongress.org.

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Cancel Culture: The Right to Cancel, or a Cancellation of Rights?
30 June 2022
14:30—16:00
KEY CONCLUSIONS
Cancel culture substitutes legal procedures

Social networks in the 21st century multiplied this culture. Now they take it to the point where it clashes with what we call ‘legal procedures’ – identifying perpetrators of specific crimes and punishment that would be appropriate to the degree of their guilt. <…> A network user cannot wait two years for the trial and the verdict. They need it right here right now — Andrey Loginov, State Secretary – Deputy Minister of Justice of the Russian Federation.

I faced backlash after one of my articles. <…> Why are you speaking against the culture of cancelling Russia, while various concerts are being cancelled in Russia? They suffer, too. However, cancelling concerts and cancelling the culture of a whole country are different. In a broad sense, cancelling a culture is hardly different from what they call sanctions, because sanctions cancel rules in a certain way — Mikhail Piotrovsky, General Director, The State Hermitage Museum.

When law, norms and legal principles are forgotten, we find ourselves in a situation similar to one depicted by Francisco Goya in The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters. <…>. If I were to paraphrase it, I would say that the sleep of law produces monsters, too. These are the monsters of unfairness, intolerance and, of course, cancel culture as their apotheosis — Vadim Vinogradov, Dean of the Faculty of Law, National Research University Higher School of Economics; Head of the Working Group on Legislation in the Field of Internet Technologies and Digitalization, Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation.

Internet reinforces the cancel culture

Historically cancel culture is nothing unique. <…> But it two elements are combined, while the government ignores them and the Internet joins the, it becomes unheard of — Vadim Vinogradov, Dean of the Faculty of Law, National Research University Higher School of Economics; Head of the Working Group on Legislation in the Field of Internet Technologies and Digitalization, Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation.

ISSUES
There is no mechanism for effective protection from cancel culture

When it comes to cancel culture, it is practically impossible to protect oneself from it. <…> Of course you go to court and ask for criminal prosecution, if it is about defamation, or file a lawsuit for the protection of honour and dignity, etc. <…> Public persons, who have achieved a lot, usually become targets: if they make a faux pas or said something wrong, they become a target of collective hysteria. <…> It is impossible to restore the reputation of somebody under attack — Anatoly Kucherena, Chairman of the Presidium, Bar Association Kucherena and Partners; Doctor of Law.

If we look at certain features of this phenomenon [cancel culture, – Ed.], first of all, it is ‘presumption of guilt’. Nobody ever tries to figure out whether the person is actually guilty. Accusation equals crime. The second criterion is vagueness of accusation. Accusation is always based on an opinion and never the law. Another thing is vagueness of claims to the cancelled person: whatever they do, it will never be enough for the cancellation initiator — Natalia Kolerova, Lawyer, Adviser, Attorneys at Law of Saint Petersburg S&K Vertical.

SOLUTIONS
Cancel culture should not be regulated by the government. We need a public dialogue

If we keep introducing taboos and bans, we will end up with an even higher level of aggression in our society. This is why, when it comes to civil society, we need to discuss these problems within it. It should not be imposed by the government. <…> It is important to search for discussion forms within civil society institutes — Anatoly Kucherena, Chairman of the Presidium, Bar Association Kucherena and Partners; Doctor of Law.

Cancel culture should be acknowledged as an extra-legal practice, foreign to healthy social relations

I believe that cancel culture is just as far from law and its fundamental principles, as slavery. I do hope that sooner or later it will be condemned and abolished, much like slavery — Vadim Vinogradov, Dean of the Faculty of Law, National Research University Higher School of Economics; Head of the Working Group on Legislation in the Field of Internet Technologies and Digitalization, Civic Chamber of the Russian Federation.

The material was prepared by the Russian news agency TASS