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Russia's Putin Signs Bill Banning Swear Words At Cultural Events

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Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a bill on Monday that bans swear words in any art, cultural, or entertainment events. CNN reports that the regulations also apply to film, theater, music and books.

The ban won't apply to past works but it mandates that warning labels reading "contains obscene language" be placed on copies of books, films, or CDs.

Even though specific words weren't outlined in the bill's language, the fines won't be pretty. Time notes that the fine is set at $70 for individual violators but can go as high as $1,400 for organizations. For repeat-business-offenders, a three-month business suspension could be issued.

However, the country's Ministry of Culture, which is responsible for the legal recognition of the arts, told The Moscow Times that the law will concern mass culture and not the arts.

"The law is not aggressive; its only aim is to regulate this sphere, so that swearing will have its purpose," Irina Kaznacheeva, the ministry's spokesperson, told The Moscow Times on Monday.

She added, "It will be up to the artistic director to decide what to do with swearing, whether to break the new law or not, we will not interfere in the process."

This is not the first time the Russian president has implemented laws to regulate speech. In April 2013, a similar measure was passed that prohibited swearing in the media.

This new ban is set to take effect on July 1, 2014.

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