Addendum to the article Genius laws from genius legislators in the hands of genius officials


A fortnight ago we published an article on the issue of content censorship on the internet. It was one of the most read articles, one of the most shared posts on Facebook and was picked up by other media outlets. We have a little addendum.

You can read the previous article on our website. There you will find details of the whole case and citations to the various laws.

What happened – brief description

A few days ago, we received a decision in our inbox from the customs office to block advertising on a particular website because it is allegedly “illegal advertising for an unauthorised lottery”. Advertising of unauthorised lotteries and betting games (not operating officially on Czech territory) is prohibited under the Advertising Act. The Advertising Act prohibits other miscellaneous advertising or various forms of promotion.

In the decision and the reasoning, it was strongly explained to us that this was clearly illegal advertising because that was simply and simply the decision of the relevant official. Without the possibility of any comment from our customer. Simply a unilateral legal act of the competent official.

Since this is supposed to be illegal advertising, the official imposed on us the obligation to block the advertisements according to the provisions of § 5 and § 6 of Act No.480/2004 Coll., on certain information society services, where as the alleged service provider we are responsible for the content of the information stored on websites hosted by us. If we fail to do so, we shall be liable for the relevant damages. De facto, in this case, we are taking profit away from the authorised bookmakers and they could sue us, which is even realistic.

The clerk wrote that we can appeal the decision within 15 days, but that it has no suspensive effect and so we have to block the customer’s website advertisement (and therefore the website). Why is it necessary to block without the possibility of suspensive effect? Why not wait until the final decision? The reasoning is literally fantastic: “According to § 68 para. 2 and § 85 para. 2 lit. (a) of the Administrative Procedure Code precludes the suspensive effect of the appeal against this decision, since the removal or termination of the dissemination of the prohibited advertising YYYYYYY, YYYYYYY and YYYZZZ through the domains and the public interest, in particular the prevention of pathological gambling, urgently requires, to prevent undesirable interest of youth and some other socially vulnerable groups of the population in gambling at the expense of more valuable and generally more beneficial forms of entertainment and leisure time, to prevent the cutting of taxes and other fees related to gambling, and to provide funds for the financing of mass sport and culture in the Czech Republic.

No one consulted us technically or legally on the whole matter. No one had ever contacted our customer up to that point. No one cared about the customer. Nobody wanted our customer’s contact details and other information… These requests came through the data box at the same time, but just in a different data message.

If we do not comply, we may be fined up to CZK 5 million and we will also be obliged to compensate for the damages incurred. Thus, when we disobey, we are liable for the damage caused by the illegal advertising. Respectively, this advertising causes other – permitted – bookmakers. So we’re in danger of a lot of this.

We stood up! We will not block the website.

We have decided to solve our issue by not blocking our customer’s ads (or website). We will appeal the decision. Since our appeal will not have suspensive effect, we will be in breach of the law and could be fined up to CZK 5 million. We are fully aware of this risk.

Such a fine could be very painful for us, but we should survive it. We believe that the defence of freedom and democracy cannot be measured in money and we must fight for our opinion. It is not about this one particular case, but about the general attitude and the fight against such interference by the state.


The aspect of freedom

It is not right that we do not respect the law, but we believe that the Authority’s decision is contrary to the law and to the highest legal standards (the Constitution and the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms).

Aspect of law

We consulted the whole thing with several lawyers and finally with the relevant authority by phone, when we told them that we would definitely not back down.

We do not consider the decision of one official to be so fundamental and decisive that it would oblige us to implement the blockade. It is not the decision of an independent tribunal.

Technical aspect

Another aspect is that it is not technically possible to turn off individual ads or any site in this case. The service is on a virtual server, where other services of our customer can be. It is not possible for us to block only a selected part of the carriage. Either the whole service can be turned off or nothing. If we shut down the entire service, we run the risk of shutting down other websites that are benign or even some other applications (for example, accounting for several branches or some trading platform…).

What else do we find objectionable?

There are several important things about this case.

  • First of all, the provisions of § 5 and § 6 of Act No.480/2004 Coll., on certain information society services, are wrong, where we, as the alleged provider of the service, are responsible for the content of the information stored on websites hosted by us… This provision puts us in a position that belongs to an independent court, which is not correct. We repeatedly criticise this provision, but “we are on our own” and so it is overlooked and neglected.
  • We are satisfied that there was no compelling public interest involved. We cannot imagine how it can be urgent from the point of view of public interest that an advertisement for a foreign bookmaker appears on a website. The determination cannot be so substantial and frivolous as to preclude the suspensive effect of the appeal.

How far can it go? What’s next?

Next time, similar action by our officials could go anywhere. Next time your site may be down. Next time a discussion forum may be shut down because some official decides there is illegal advertising or content in violation of the law. After all, advertising can be a subtle comment. This is real censorship.
There will be elections in less than a year. If officials are active, they can switch on whatever they “like” and influence anything. We’re not exaggerating. 17. 12. 2016 the internet is a more important and influential medium than TV and radio or print media. All you have to do is influence public opinion to influence anything.

It’s really about censorship

Yes, this is real censorship. Real content censorship. In this particular case, it was about blocking advertising, but we have encountered requests for content censorship that have been justified very much the same way.

The Gambling Act is just a small thing, but it’s being talked about more

In the summer, the internet (technical) community revolted over the Gambling Act, which from January obliges ISPs to block banned lotteries. There was so much “whining” about it that it looked like the bookies were paying. We don’t deny that this is also a form of censorship, but it is really based on the law. The law determines what will be blocked and under what conditions and who will block it.

The whole gambling law is all about gambling and so it’s only a tiny part of the internet space. A small thing. The real impact on the average user is minimal. However, this is very easy to “work around”. Technically, all users need to do is connect via some proxy, VPN or exit torus and any blocking (by their connection provider) will not affect them in any way and the Ministry of Finance is a laughing stock.

It is clear that from January onwards, bookmakers’ websites will be blocked and next time it may be websites of inconvenient opponents or competitors etc..


We want to thank all of you for your support of the issue. It’s incredible that you share everything and read with interest. Tens of thousands of readers have read the whole story. There are various comments under the articles and hundreds of shares. It is clear that not everyone is indifferent to what is happening in society.

Questions and comments

Due to the quantity, we have selected only the most interesting ones and we present our reaction to them. So we do not respond to all of them because it would be extremely long and often repetitive.

On our website

David, 14.12.2016 15:30:57
I would be quite interested to know how this law complies with the laws on freedom of speech etc, from my point of view it is absolute bullshit and being a gambling operator I will sue the Czech state for discrimination against my business. Furthermore, if they want to take this step as a protection to prevent youth from falling into gambling, it would be better if the money that was and will be needed to enforce and monitor this law would be better invested by the state for example for the development of youth activities.
How about if the state started building multipurpose playgrounds, or pc cafes that would serve to keep people from gambling?
Yes, I know the pc is 17. 12. 2016 in every household but I also know that the level of it technology in homes is not quite ideal to handle the newer games. Another problem is that many games need a direct lan network, programs to create virtual lan may not always work.
This is my opinion on the matter and I do not claim that it is good.
PS.: it just seems to me that our “democratic” state forgets more and more often what democracy actually is?

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Restricting gambling seems to be in line with the law and, in general, with the fact that some freedoms can be restricted by law. We don’t see anything wrong with that, but in our case, it’s about using the wrong law in the wrong way to do the wrong thing. And next time there may be restrictions on other freedoms…

Marek Matovka, 14.12.2016 14:55:14
The current wording of the Lottery Act favours Czech licensed entities over their European competitors and is therefore in direct contradiction with the fundamental principles of European law, in particular the principle of free movement of services under Art. 49 EC. The Lottery Act and the Act on Advertising Regulation are therefore in conflict with European law, which takes precedence over Czech law in terms of application.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

I am not exactly familiar with this issue, but theoretically it is not a problem because there are regulations that can limit and regulate certain issues.

Martin Soch, 14.12.2016 14:20:53
This is yet another reason why only a fool hosts in the Czech Republic. The ideal is a foreign cloud and DNS, which can be switched in a few minutes. It’s a matter of a few clicks to migrate such a setup somewhere else.

And the Czech authorities can go fuck themselves.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Moving somewhere else is very easy. You will escape from the reach of the authorities and you can circumvent the law as much as you want. No official will be able to reach you then. Similar laws that regulate the internet in a similarly nonsensical way are unnecessary.

wajrou, 14.12.2016 13:22:27
Almost 15 years ago, I had to delete content on my server for a friend because his client hadn’t paid him for the production of the site. As a webmaster, he placed the information about the non-payment of the order directly on the website of his client, who started calling me as the server operator and threatening me. His lawyer followed and argued about the law, which at 18 years old I didn’t understand at all. So I’m soft. 17. 12. 2016, I would have laughed at that bastard. And you have my admiration all the more for being able to counter such “demonstrably illegal” pressure against the authorities, the police and the courts. I really take my hat off to what you are doing to maintain the freedom of the Czech internet. As I observe what has happened in the Czech Republic with net neutrality, I can no longer imagine having a single server in this country and counting on it still running tomorrow.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

This is the several times we have defended our clients. As a result, we are also defending ourselves.

Michal, 14.12.2016 13:19:57
Anyone who values freedom must keep all fingers crossed for you. This creeping robbery of freedom, the constant issuing of new nonsensical bans, orders, regulations and censorship must be annoying to any decent person. Fight!

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Sometimes we feel that people don’t value freedom. They take freedoms for granted. But freedoms have to be fought for, and we believe it makes sense.

Formi, 14.12.2016 08:57:12
There is no other way to solve this than with whoever is providing the personalised advertising. He or she should respect the laws of the country in question and not run gambling ads in a browser in a country where it is illegal. Greasy Google spies on people 24/7 and makes huge profits from it, but no one thinks to hold them accountable anymore. You’d rather whine here about how unfair it is and how the officials are oppressing you…I really don’t get it, you’re crying on the wrong grave.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

The problem is not that we are lamenting that we don’t want to respect the law and the ban on lottery ads.

The problem is that the official decides that it is illegal and doesn’t give the option of appeal (or enforceability) and wants a third party to do it (and certainly doesn’t tell us how to technically block it).

Only then does the official ask for the website owner’s contact details.
It’s kind of upside down…

At the same time, compare the impact and possible future abuse…

In the summer, there was “weeping” over the new gambling law. The whole internet cried, it was taken to the Constitutional Court, but there are worse (and more easily abused) provisions in our legal system. There is real censorship, there is future impact and there are huge risks of abuse of the whole process. You can’t make decisions without a judge… and to invoke a compelling legal interest in a case like this is ridiculous.

Formi, 14.12.2016 10:02:06
Well inside out…it makes sense from the logic and nature of the thing that the urgency makes sense…once gambling is branded as a socially harmful thing, then some sort of tracking down and contacting the owners can never work effectively and quickly. In addition, by law you have 15 days to resolve the situation – either at the hosting level, domain level or by contacting and correcting the owner. I’m not saying that it doesn’t take time, money, and sometimes it’s technically more difficult to block, but then you need to address the problem at the source, as I wrote in my previous post.

Abuse is also a relative thing. If we’re talking about sites using AdSense and similar jokes, then reporting things like this will force the operator to change ad providers, remove ads, and hopefully at least put pressure on Google to address the situation. The problem I see is the dragging of companies like Wedos into these shenanigans and using them as the executive branch of the law. But here you need to cry elsewhere, because you are still the one with the ON/OFF button, whether you like it or not.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Such a decision does not admit of controversy as to whether or not it is legal or illegal advertising. Period. One official ruled it is not and so shut down.

Next time, what’s it gonna be? Next time, another official will label something else as illegal (without the possibility of suspensive effect of appeal)… And in time, we can block everything. And it’s completely unnecessary. Within the Internet, everything moves somewhere else…
Maybe next time they’ll ban this site because this is where my posts and yours are. Someone doesn’t like them and some official decides it should be turned off.

In our particular case (betting ads), there is certainly no overriding legal interest that would allow and justify such action.

Of course we want to address the situation and we are cracking down on illegal things, but there have to be rules and boundaries.
Of course, someone has to tell us how to do it. How are we supposed to do this.

The hosting (or clerk) is not to replace the judge.

As I wrote – there was talk over the summer of a gambling law that is not all that objectionable (compared to what has long been in place). This is also why I wanted to point this out.

Formi, 14.12.2016 10:52:35
I don’t really understand your point…I think even a below-average intelligent official can easily recognize an advertisement for gambling (e.g. a banner for betting on odds), so disputes and controversies about the legality or illegality of the initiative on the part of the state administration should be kept to a minimum. But if you’re talking about the malice of an official shill who sucks the denunciation off his finger, then that seems pretty far-fetched to me, or at least a pretty marginal issue.

I understand your indignation that there is a law that affects you personally and robs you of time and money, but I don’t think it is appropriate to link the gambling law with internet censorship. In this case, you’re already putting your personal interests above reasonable discussion.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

It is impossible to agree that even a person of below average intelligence can recognize a gambling advertisement. Advertisements are different, advertising can be just different discussions and “recommendations” in discussion forums. You can’t just see advertising as a banner somewhere on the web. There are many more different, more or less hidden or ambiguous forms of advertising. And we can never avoid shutting down the websites of clients who are inconvenient to someone (for example, a political party during an election). That line is very fragile.

It is certainly not a marginal issue, but these are situations that we deal with several times a year. Yes, several times a year we decide to disobey an order because we believe it is illegal. When you consider that we are only talking about our experience, consider the number of such decisions that are made in the whole country every year.

It’s not about our personal interests at all. If that were the case, we’d shut the bastard down and we wouldn’t care. We collect tens of crowns a month from our customers, but we invest thousands and tens of thousands on lawyers to defend them. It’s certainly not our interest.

Patrik Timura, 14.12.2016 22:29:25
Sure, even a below-average clerk can spot a betting ad. The average person might be able to tell that this is illegal advertising, i.e. aimed at games that are not reported and therefore legal. But I can’t imagine that the average clerk would be able to tell if the ad is being displayed because of an embedded script in PHP or another language from an external source (and thus the ad is being displayed without any influence from the site owner) or if the sole purpose of the domain is to display illegal advertising.

But what annoys me the most is that there is a law that imposes an obligation based on the decision of some official without the possibility of postponing that decision and reviewing it. And what’s the worst part? That there is a law that imposes an obligation that is not technically feasible to the extent that the law imposes it.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

That’s exactly what it is. This is not clear-cut. Moreover, the knowledge of officials is mostly not technical and professional. It is then very problematic.

The laws that we criticize are bad and are misinterpreted and abused by the authorities. What’s more, these laws are being abused by the authorities.

wajrou, 14.12.2016 16:06:58
And you’re right – the state shouldn’t ask the server operator to shut it down when the site owner only has a script for inserting Google ads and everything that is displayed from Google AdSense to the target user has nothing to do with the server. I’m not going to argue about whether or not Google is stuck, you obviously prefer other services and instead of spying on Google you have all google ads blocked and use another search engine. But I think the crying is in the right place. The state should not act in this way, or should issue a clear statement, for example, when we are talking about Google, whether AdSense is legal or not (if it can show the person illegal advertisement he/she searched for on the basis of personalized advertising) or with what settings. Passing vague laws to encourage misinterpretation and corruption at various levels of the state apparatus is not really enough. And if democracy here had any Western character, people would not tolerate such chaos, God forbid that they should tolerate it and even nod at it.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Yes, it’s exactly that. A bad law that is misinterpreted is also misused and even abused. Almost no one minds. Strange. It’s probably because we take all freedoms for granted.

David, 13.12.2016 23:06:10

if what you write is true, I appreciate it. Because here.
It’s not just about clients and the prestige of your hosting, it’s about protecting fundamental rights, values and justice. – and it would affect everyone (including you as an operator) if you gave up. You are in a position where you can defend it and set an example for smaller players, e.g.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

It comes from the fact that I am a lawyer by background and so I am not looking at the issue purely technically, but also from a legal point of view. What is happening in our society is sometimes astonishing. I don’t want to get into politics here, but if we don’t defend basic freedoms, we will lose them because we probably don’t deserve them.

Carrot, 13.12.2016 20:45:42
What’s the problem, I don’t understand. The law on advertising regulation has been in force for a long time. And that includes the internet. There are simply certain industries that are regulated.
Protecting clients is like hiding thieves from the law at home.
Just report who the site operator is and you’re done.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

We understand and respect the fact that some industries are regulated. Here’s the deal:

– we were not allowed to just “report the site operator and be done with it”, but instead imposed a straight step from censorship (and only on the basis of the decision of one official),

– nobody tells us how to do it technically, so that we block only a selected part and not the whole virtual server

– an urgent interest which does not allow suspensive effect,

– you can include many different things under prohibited things in terms of the Advertising Regulation Act (especially when it comes to judging based on the malice of one official),

– for the possible abuse of these sections, it takes very little indeed and thus it is easily abused,

– the constant reiteration that hosting should be responsible for content.

And so it could go on…

Carrot, 14.12.2016 12:13:11
Yeah, I understand that, anyway, what’s stopping you from just shutting down the site. Advertising systems in the CR do not enjoy it either, that they would allow advertising to unregistered sockets.

As I understand it, the law puts unreasonable power in the hands of the editor. But don’t say you can’t reason with him…

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

You can’t talk to a clerk. He’ll send a decision. No possibility of suspensive effect. Of course we are not defending illegal activities, but we are talking about bad laws and their application in practical life.

Patrik Timura, 14.12.2016 22:38:34
The problem is that VPS is not “just” one website. VPS is a whole server that can host more than one website, even hundreds of others. And by shutting down the VPS you will not “just” take down one site, but probably others as well. I have a total of four domains on my VPS, and I would be really pissed if they took them all down because a competitor undermined some official at the Ministry of Finance or Customs.

Also, the clerk’s procedure is wrong – common sense tells me that he should first contact the owner of the site with the words “hey hey, that’s not allowed here, you have a day to fix it”, and only then cut it off.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

It’s as you write. Firstly, it is technically a problem and exactly the same situation as yours can occur, where we shut down many more services that are not affected.
At the same time, the clerk here did not even check the identity of the customer, but started blocking straight away. It is utterly nonsensical to accept the approach that there was a compelling public interest in this case.

Memento, 13.12.2016 20:37:30
And what do you think of this law?

“An undertaking providing a public communications network or a publicly available electronic communications service commits an administrative offence by….
(b) fails to establish or provide at designated points in its network an interface for the connection of a telecommunications terminal equipment for interception and recording of messages in accordance with section 97(1)(a). 1″

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

we know about this and we’re watching it. The next step…

One thing to think about, which was also offered to us and we refused… For example, does the Home Office covertly fund netflow monitoring equipment? It is not talked about much, but it is done by buying equipment through companies that arrange financing. Subsequent instalments are paid out of what the Home Office pays for the information (and presumably the data) provided.
I don’t have a way to back it up, but somehow that seems to be how it works.

Maybe it would be worth asking the Home Office about all similar payments to IT companies and see a list of which operator shares data from Netflow with certain parts of the state… But that’s more for journalists and not for us.

Ondřej Špulák 2016-12-17 11:27:53
Act on Certain Information Society Services vs. Directive – interpretation

Mr. Grill,
the meaning of the provisions of the ZoNSIS that you have quoted is a little different from the meaning that you and the authorities you mention understand. They are, somewhat clumsily, an implementation of the EU Directive 2000/31/EC on electronic commerce (, which is not intended to create liability for ISPs, but rather to limit it, and the provisions of the law should be read in this way. See Art. 14 of the Directive: “Member States shall ensure that, in the case of an information society service consisting of the storage of information provided by the recipient of the service, the service provider is not liable for the information stored at the request of the recipient if …” It’s quite the opposite, the provisions are not aimed at your liability, but at limiting it, which file hosts have successfully used as a defence for a long time. That the officials do not know this is no surprise, but that you were not advised by the law firm that provides you with legal services is very surprising, because this is the way it should be argued on your side.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

It is clear to us that the intent of the provision is different, but the situation is this. Take a look read on:
“Information gathering

(1) Member States shall ensure that, in the case of an information society service consisting of the storage of information provided by the recipient of the service, the service provider is not liable for information stored at the request of the recipient if:

(a) the provider was not effectively aware of the unlawful activity or information and, even with respect to the claim for damages, is not aware of facts or circumstances from which the unlawful activity or information would be apparent; or

(b) the provider, on becoming aware of it, has acted to remove the information or to prevent access to it.”

From the official’s perspective, we have been made aware of the illegal activity (or information) and are thus strictly liable for damages.

Moreover, take this in the context of the whole situation and the abuse of other issues by the authorities…

On social networks


Martin Dvořák So? Gambling is not a positive thing.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

The problem is not that we are lamenting that we don’t want to respect the law and the ban on lottery ads. The problem is that there are bad laws that are misinterpreted and very easily abused.

Michal Gigi Anyone who values freedom must keep all fingers crossed for you. This creeping deprivation of freedom, the constant issuing of new bans and orders, must be annoying to decent people. Hang in there, most decent people are behind you.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Thank you.

Honza Pobořil How about responding with a criminal complaint? Looks like overreach. And to base it on the fact that you are not the operator and yet some official wants you to do something without the possibility of appeal.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

I don’t think that’s the way to go. In our opinion, this is not a single case, but a much more common situation. It’s just not talked about. It takes a few tweaks to the law and it takes all of us speaking up when we lose certain freedoms or when certain freedoms are threatened.

Amju Wolf Thanks so much for the article and for fighting for your customers.

In this particular case, can’t you appeal to the fact that they’re actually asking for the wrong entity? Since it’s on a VPS, you’re not the operator

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Unfortunately, the way the law is written, we are the operator. Besides, this is only part of the problem. The second part is the uncompromising attitude of the official who orders the blocking without any possibility to solve the situation otherwise.

Amju Wolf Unfortunately, that won’t work because it will only affect a tiny fraction of people. A regular “browser” will just see that some random site is not working (this happens commonly for various reasons) and the site owner will go elsewhere and can still claim damages from WEDOS.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Yes, we are facing possible compensation. On the one hand, there is a threat from those lotteries that have permission to operate in the Czech Republic and we do not comply with the blockade. On the other hand, we run the risk of damages to our client if we turn off the service based on a bad decision by an official.

Lubomír Merta Well ku*da Babiš has perfected it… There’s only one thing to say to that.

Block it on the way out with protection and good luck. It will affect others, but they will avoid having to explain something in court or to customs 🙂

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

The law has been in place for much longer than the current government, so we can’t blame them. Now perhaps we can blame the fact that there is a certain suppression of freedoms…

Blocking everything would be the only solution 🙂

Robin Karel Popper So you’ll have to move your datacenter a bit further south to Austria, no.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

These are also possible ways. But one website will solve that, but not a bad law and restricting freedoms.

David Hibsch you are whining for nothing, and you whine to massage your ego about how good you are….

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

I guess that’s the only thing wrong with it. That’s not what this is about.

Adam Benda Wedosáci, it doesn’t matter what I personally think about gambling, but by the nature of the matter I appreciate your distinctive approach. A huge number of companies (and generally a large number of people) usually approach any activity so that they have no e…

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

We don’t support gambling. It’s not really about gambling either. Next time there may be a blocked site that someone just doesn’t like and someone will want to “get rid of” it.

Dominik Fryč Great article! It’s really scary what’s been happening to our country lately. The worst thing is that this is not about any gambling sites, but about the principle, about the freedom of the Internet. Exactly as written in the article, this can affect any site owner. My fingers are crossed and I am extremely happy for your approach.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

In the end, it’s not just about the freedom of the internet, but about the freedom of any of us in general. Somehow we take these freedoms automatically…

Hubert Frey Officials probably don’t know that they can’t achieve anything. If I host a Czech website abroad, they do nothing

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Yes, that’s exactly right. Unnecessary effort that employs completely unnecessary civil servants does not benefit us or anyone. On the contrary, through zeal, the law is abused and freedoms are curtailed.

Tomas Bosek Maybe recommend to all customers that such links go through services like 🙂

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

If it helps, but you end up tracking down stuff like this anyway. It’s just about the effort you put into it.

Peter Burian You should inform the public about each case in detail and make a web hosted outside the network (high availability). And promote it properly. This is not just about, rather all providers should join such a project…Show more
[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

We’re trying to draw attention to what happened. We wrote that years ago. It’s strange that an awful lot of time has been spent on anti-gambling activities this summer, but this is not being talked about and yet it has a much more fundamental impact.


Petr Jeník @PetrJenik 13. 12.
@WEDOS_cz and sites hosted in Panama operated offshore in the Seychelles will have a bumper harvest. I’d be fucking sick of the authorities 🙁

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :
@PetrJenik We are already preparing for this. The harvest will be for us too. We already have an office and servers physically in Africa. Indeed.

Martin Jurica @maestrosill 13. 12.
@WEDOS_cz so, if I understand correctly, the “advertising for unauthorized lotteries” can also be comment spam and I’m done with the blog, yes? Nice…

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :
@maestrosill Yes, it can be anything and the official will determine what it is… You have no way to defend yourself. There’s nothing you can do about it.

Other websites (especially

15. 12. 2016 10:55
Tomáš2 (not registered) —

child ponography is a cliché.

If it’s about banned content, you’ll deal with the owner in a classic administrative procedure, just like you deal with banned outdoor advertising, not by closing off the whole street so that no one sees illegal content in someone’s garden.

Here’s a company that rents space, just like a shopping mall rents you a store. He does not have access to the premises by law or contract, but he does not have keys to the shop, although he can get in by force, but again this is a violation of contracts and laws. In a shop you have an advertisement displayed behind the window which is not allowed and in the normal world the authorities will start administrative proceedings to remove the advertisement or in case of a more serious violation the police will run in and confiscate the advertisement, then again the offence/crime is dealt with in administrative proceedings or in court. No one ever addresses banned advertising through the owner of the shopping centre, so that he confiscates the poster or closes the shop because it contains something bad.

The authorities cannot, as a matter of principle, relieve themselves of their duty at the expense of limiting many other rights and delegating guilt to a third party. This has no business being here.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Yes, child pornography is something else entirely. There is also a different regulation in terms of criminal law.

15. 12. 2016 10:59
Tomáš2 (not registered) —
here is another problem, the authorities have started to abuse this paragraph and block sites even though there is no physical content that is harmful, but it is only displayed through the advertising network and the server itself never gets to it, the browser downloads it from another location, I see a huge problem here.

Do you, who have any advertising on your site, control (or have the ability to control) all advertising that appears on your site? Now they can shut down your website for this…

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

It’s a misuse of the section to censor, and it can be practically any kind of censorship, and if the official justifies it on the grounds of pressing public interest, he will shut down anything, anytime. We cannot agree with that. This is an extremely serious intervention and it is only a short step to censorship and totalitarianism. I’m writing this pretty “hard”, but it’s true.

15. 12. 2016 1:28 pm dino
dino 10
Yeah, but AdSense can laugh at the Czech legislation. This absurd state of affairs is due to who can be stepped on.

We have Wedos, who provided the VPS, Franta, who started a website in it, and AdSense, who supplies the bad advertising in terms of our legislation. Who can the state step on? Not on AdSense, that’s far away. He could go to Franta, but there are too many Frantas and the authorities would not be able to keep up. And so the turd falls on Wedos, which has nothing to do with the ad, but there are significantly fewer Wedos, they can be chased around the yard with a whip.

However, we can at least console ourselves with the fact that it could get worse, the legislators could also blame it on CEZ, because no electricity, no advertising.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

It’s not just about AdSense. It is a bad paragraph and a bad attitude of the authorities. It’s unfortunately the case that they are going after exactly one provider and they didn’t care (until then) who caused it.

Karlos (not registered) —
I am of the opinion that such problems are to some extent caused by the lack of interest of citizens in the functioning of society. The state is not the elites who run things according to their own ideas, but above all the citizens who have common interests. If people go to the polls, write to MPs, senators and officials with their views so they don’t think they can get away with everything, maybe things will start to look different.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Unfortunately, you’re right. We are a nation that grumbles and curses but rarely stands up and does anything. Our approach of refusing to comply with the authorities is in a way a protection of democracy and a show of disapproval, saying that I cannot believe that such a thing is possible. The fact that we’re publishing it is that we’re drawing attention to it. And so that’s the form of that letter to those of our MPs.

15. 12. 2016 9:52
Redmarx (unregistered) 195.113.132.—
Agreed, it was approved 2004, now it is quite late to start criticizing it. But I quite understand the situation, in 2004 some uncle in the parliament came up with something and the others approved it without knowing what it was about and that was it. No one enforced the law, so why would anyone pause over some bullshit from parliament. Time passed and then Bures came in. And Bures is a different kind of matros, he won’t be talked into it, he will make the whole republic his agrofet, even if people stand on their heads. :-/

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

It’s taken from EU regulations, but no one has ever stopped to point out that it’s nonsense. Nobody used it for the first few years. I personally didn’t encounter it until sometime in 2009 and never until then. In the last 3 years, this provision has been invoked by everyone from individuals, to lawyers, to the authorities (or the courts).

15. 12. 2016 13:43
Ivan Nový (not registered) —
Wedos is a big enough company to run fudges through customs with the help of lawyers. The state must be dealt with at every opportunity, pity every blow that falls short. You can’t forgive the bureaucracy, you can’t go along with it. It is the enemy of us all.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Yes, we will stand up, but it costs time and money. And instead of attending to our customers, we have to argue with the authorities. I know we do it for our customers, but it’s strange that this could even come about in our democracy.

15. 12. 2016 15:24
soumenvodnetbook (not registered) —
What about blocking access from IP addresses belonging to the government?

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

If it were that easy, we would do it 🙂

15. 12. 2016 10:45
tom (not registered) —
I suggest that all officials must install Adblock, then they will not see any advertising and will be at peace!

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Block their internet completely 🙂 because it’s funny when you see how they surf in some offices (for example, look at the profiles of some officials on social networks and see how many posts they have during the working day). And then you go to the police and you want them to look somewhere and they can’t…

15. 12. 2016 11:02
Tomáš2 (not registered) —
Practically, they don’t turn it off, but they stop it from communicating in the nearest FW and leave the throughput for the owner to fix the problem.

Blocking the whole server/web just because of a few displayed images/texts can be a really big problem, imagine that some smart guy throws an ad in the discussion below the article, which someone evaluates as banned and shuts down your site.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

It’s just technically impossible to do it selectively like that. There is no way. On a VPS we can shut down anything at the same time.

15. 12. 2016 22:55
radim (not registered) 213.108.162.—
I wish wedos would defend himself as aggressively as possible, legally, I’ll send you a hundred. put a payment button on it.

It is out of the question for the hoster to deal with something, let the shit fall on the owner of the site or the supplier of advertising and let the state haggle with him.

This republic is in a lot of [bleep]. When the law says I have to jump out of the window or that Jews are going to the gas chamber, will we shut up and act quietly?!?

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Thank you for your support. We’re gonna take it and we’re gonna fight it. Even with a possible fine, because of course we won’t take it. I am convinced that even if we were to take this all the way to the Constitutional Court, we must succeed.

15. 12. 2016 11:19
Ivan Nový (not registered) —
Who is the enemy of the citizens in Europe? State.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Bureaucracy is the biggest obstacle to the EU and to development. The EU as a community of nations makes sense, but the administration spoils it all. However, this is getting into the political sphere and that does not belong here.

15. 12. 2016 2:40 pm dino
dino 10
There’s another possibility, which is that most citizens don’t give a shit as long as they get on Facebook, YouTube, i17. 12. 2016 and mail on Seznam, the rest of the internet may well burn in the flames of official hell.

It’s all very well to talk about the “interests of citizens”, but the truth is that there are very few specific services that would actually interest, if not the majority, at least a minority of tens of percent of the population. I wonder how many citizens might feel the need to access foreign betting sites? I would see it in the order of tens of thousands at most, and even then I feel like I’m exaggerating.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

These foreign betting sites interest a minimum of people, it will be fractions. The problem is that now you can’t technically block only the selected… and the much bigger problem is that the next time officials remember they want to block, say, opponents’ websites before an election. They will always find a reason and justify it, as in this case.

15. 12. 2016 8:36
N/A (not registered) —
I see another risk:

A small example: next year there will be parliamentary elections, the following year presidential elections, if I remember correctly.
If that one candidate instructs some/all of his/her opponents to shut down their websites, he/she will surely cause trouble for them – both in terms of publishing their opinions, agenda, etc., and in terms of accusing them of illegal activity.
Which can have a much bigger impact than losing a few million in business.

(I don’t want to minimize the problems that an unauthorized blocking of a website will bring to the affected company, I just see it as less socially dangerous.)

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Yes, that’s exactly how I take it and that’s exactly how I feel. That’s why we are arming against it. It’s not just one website with a few links.

15. 12. 2016 18:02
krakonoš (unregistered) —
That’s an excellent idea! If everybody did it this way, there would be no need for ad blockers, I just need to go online from a suitable IP address.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

I guess we’ll make a service where you can go out via VPN 🙂

16. 12. 2016 12:37
LB (unregistered) —
In my opinion, the problem is not the law itself, which is absurdly nonsensical, but the fact that someone is willing to follow it. My response to any request to shut down a site I host or manage would be that it is not possible. The hosting provider is not the owner of the website, and the provider may have to pay a hefty penalty for failure of the hosting service. If the authority finds any violation on a website, it must take it up with the owner of the website. On the other hand, I understand that the office may request some old versions of the data for the sake of proof, but the hosting provider cannot influence what will be in the data, so for example external advertising will not be in any backup. .. To me, it’s the same as if they wanted to impose fines on garage landlords when a car that caused a traffic accident is parked there. Does the garage owner have any control over what kind of car the tenant puts there? Theoretically he could put cameras there and search online databases of stolen and wanted cars, but isn’t that absurd? (I hope some clever official doesn’t read this and try to enact it into law).

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Bad law. Usage bad. Especially the threat to the future… There’s a risk of abuse.

15. 12. 2016 10:02
Goblin (unregistered) 176.74.140.—
It doesn’t matter what my uncle in 2004 thought, because my uncles in 2016 understand it the same way: not at all.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Officials don’t understand and therefore invent things that don’t work. But we should obey.

15. 12. 2016 12:45 pm dino
dino 10
Yes, that would indeed be reasonable, but that is precisely what is sometimes expressly forbidden, see “In many similar cases we are advised not to contact the client in order not to frustrate the investigation.”

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

We have such orders from time to time…

15. 12. 2016 13:53
Tomáš2 (not registered) —
Yes, it was ironic, I was trying to point out the absurdity of the situation.

The idea that a civil servant will grab some browser plugin that will change the advertising on the site and then blacklist all the sites he visits scares me.

Such power cannot remain in the hands of fundamentally ignorant officials without clear rules on burdens of proof and technicalities.

The rationale that illegal advertising creates addiction and legal advertising probably doesn’t is a lot of information manipulation.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

This foreign bookmaker is definitely more addictive than the Czech one 🙂 .

16. 12. 2016 9:55
Desmos (unregistered) —
And it’s going to get worse. We are just going through the thorny road from totalitarianism to totalitarianism. And it’s not just the Internet.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

The development of all kinds of things (economic, social…) usually goes through some kind of cycles. There are small and frequently recurring cycles and large less frequent ones. People forget about it and then wonder. People forget that they had somehow in totalitarianism and end up remembering only some things… And they don’t admit that such steps actually tend sooner or later to bring the cycle back to what generations previously disliked…

15. 12. 2016 9:10
Ford (unregistered) —
With such we will see a time when the web and the internet will be only for the needs of the local dictatorship.
2004 when it was created the same stuff ruled as now.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Now they will restrict this, next time something else, and then before the elections they will restrict something else and the result will be that we will only be able to watch selected things like in China…

15. 12. 2016 16:12
jabkenica (unregistered) 194.228.27.—
The simplest solution after such a request is to block access to the website in question from the address of the requesting authority.
Ad blocking, resp. of the entire site done and be wise, organ!

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

If only it were that easy 🙂

15. 12. 2016 16:44 Tomas3
Tomas3 10
If you understand the “office” as a single entity, it does not help to solve the problem you describe. You can’t take over a uniform shape, you’d better take it from the other end. These decisions are approved by someone specific, not out of miserable joy, but simply because they are not sufficiently well-founded and are not professionally/intellectually suited for the position. Make sure it is replaced and the problem of misapplication of the law can be solved with the wave of a magic wand.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

This isn’t the first case. We warn repeatedly and we do it several times a year… That’s when more officials need to be replaced. 🙂

16. 12. 2016 15:51
Pavel (not registered) 185.24.236.—
It would have killed a lot more.

If I fuck my mother-in-law, she’ll be responsible:
– Knife manufacturer
– Salesman
– The transport company, because I used the tram to get from the shop
– The owner of the apartment where I stabbed my mother-in-law

And maybe all the knife maker’s contractors, the stores and public transportation and their contractors, the construction company that built the house I stabbed my mother-in-law in and all their contractors, etc. and eventually all 7,000,000,000 people on this planet will be locked up for one murder.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Also a solution 🙂 It will definitely be a matter of urgent public interest.

15. 12. 2016 11:17
Ivan Nový (not registered) —
Laws are the responsibility of those who made them, i.e. the state. Damage caused by the application of the laws should be covered by the state. The state itself has admitted this, and compensates sheep owners for sheep strangled by wolves, which the law protects and does not allow to be shot. So, based on this precedent, it is possible to sue the state for damages resulting from the application of any law. You can also sue the customs administration for damages caused by its decision.

Wedos should challenge every decision of the customs administration in court, asking the court for an interim measure, a suspension of the customs administration’s decision to avoid damage.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

We will fight back, but it all costs time and money. Some disputes cost tens of thousands of crowns and multiply that by the number of cases. It’s a waste of money. It would be better if similarly bad laws were not…

15. 12. 2016 13:49

Ivan Nový (not registered) —
And you also need to sue the state and claim damages from it.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

This is all a long run. A very long one.

16. 12. 2016 15:25
mendrit (unregistered) 93.185.5.—
Whether or not it is illegal content is for the court to decide, not the clerk. Moreover, the operator is in a very bad position to defend himself.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

16. 12. 2016 18:18
VM (unregistered) 89.190.54.—
I don’t think international arbitration can be brought against a local government. Foreign companies have an advantage in this.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Yes, foreign companies have advantages. Maybe they get an investment incentive for every new job and nobody gives us anything (and we’ve made dozens of those jobs).

15. 12. 2016 23:04
Ono Samo (unregistered) —
That banned advertising is not dealt with by anyone through the mall owner may have been valid, but it certainly cannot be relied upon to continue to be valid – see

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

Another beautiful case… What’s next?

16. 12. 2016 11:40
Ivan Nový (not registered) —
MF has lost most of its disputes. Moreover, the conditions are in your hands, so you can tailor the environment so that MF doesn’t stand a chance, plus his thought “processes” are quite transparent. The bottom line is hitting what you can fit within the law.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

The best way to write about it and defend yourself is like this. They’ll be scared of that.

16. 12. 2016 15:20
Tomáš2 (not registered) —
This was just an example, of course you are responsible for what you have on the web, but here in a way created a previously unregulated environment and in my opinion the state should respect the technical state and not limit the emerging industry with nonsensical obstacles.

Why is it that in other countries this can be solved in a technically acceptable way and here such strangeness arises?

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

This is probably the lobbying of some groups – Czech bookmakers who are watching the Czech market. The ministries help them do this for a fee and everyone is happy. And we’re supposed to block it. But where is it written that next time something else will not be blocked… and it doesn’t affect democracy as a whole.

16. 12. 2016 14:34
Ivan Nový (not registered) —
Yes, it’s like cancer, yet we must not give up.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

These are the things that are cautiously spreading and expanding. And there is no limit and no one knows when it will end.

15. 12. 2016 11:13
asdf (not registered) —
It seems to me reasonable to do likewise in similar cases. Notify the VPS user that he has a problem to fix e.g. within 24 hours, then he’ll be shut down on FW.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

The problem is that sometimes the authorities directly forbid or prohibit us from disclosing anything to the client. 24 hours may be fine, but maybe it’s a short time and some illegal advertising is not so urgent…

17. 12. 2016 0:02

Ivan Nový (not registered) 85.135.69.—
You mustn’t be so afraid of them, they are usually weak in scrambles. In the matter of the preliminary scalding proposals, it is a routine, a principle. You just get a motion to block, the first thing you do is you make a motion for a preliminary injunction without giving it any thought, you do it as a standard action. There is no dispute that it will be dismissed, but you are covered for any further litigation, the state has made it impossible for you to prevent harm. And you have a court order to that effect.

For a large provider such as Wedos, it is necessary to take into account the costs for these purposes, approximately CZK 500,000 per year. That’s 250 submissions. That should be enough to deter the administration.

Otherwise, it is not my fault that I regard the state administration as the enemy, because that is the fault of the state administration.

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

The costs are much higher. All this legal representation is expensive and you can expect tens of thousands of crowns per case.

15. 12. 2016 13:41 Tonda
Tonda 76
No matter what the law is, once it is banned content. Would the operator take the same lax approach if instead of illegal gambling it was, for example, child pornography?

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

That’s something else entirely. Here we are talking about bad law, bad application of bad decisions, and the inability to defend oneself in any way. Ultimately, it is about future exploitability.

15. 12. 2016 9:54
asdf (not registered) —
And if such a VPS server was attacking your infrastructure and causing problems for other VPSs on your network, would you also proceed with such caution and not shut it down?

[odpověď] Josef Grill, WEDOS :

We always try to find a solution that does not impact the service provided. As long as it doesn’t affect other clients, we don’t limit anyone. Shutting down is always a last resort.

In this bureaucratic case, it’s more than that. This is about democracy and guarantees of certain freedoms on which our society is based.