Friday, March 13, 2009

Enemies of the Internet

Reading newspapers isn't totally useless after all; for example, if I didn't read Le Journal de Montréal, I wouldn't have come across this article concerning countries deemed by Reporters Without Borders as being 'Enemies of the Internet'. There are also ten more countries called 'under surveillance' by RWB, including Australia and South Korea.

[Translated by me from the original French]

The twelve "Enemies of the Internet", classified by the organization for the defense and liberty of the press, are Saudi Arabia, Burma, China, North Korea, Cuba, Egypt, Iran, Syria, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Vietnam. "All have transformed their network into an Intranet, stopping internauts from accessing information judged as undesirable –" and have put in a place a "quasi-systematic repression against internauts who spread" such information, states RWB.

You can't say that this is really surprising, knowing what shitholes those countries are in the first place. I sorely pity those poor folk.

Of course, it will come as no surprise that the "People's Republic" of China is the worst offender here, as they imprison the most cyber-dissidents of them all (49), followed by Vietnam (7) and Iran (4). Yet those stupid two-faced rats keep getting angry whenever we point out these facts. Idiotic hypocrites.

All in all, RWB have learned of 69 people that've been imprisoned throughout these countries 'for having expressed themselves freely over the Internet'.

In addition to these worst 'Enemies of the Internet', RWB have categorized ten States as being 'under surveillance' for having 'adopted worrisome measures that could open the door to abuses': Australia, Bahrain, Belarus, South Korea, the United Arabian Emirates, Erythraea, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Zimbabwe.

Australia is included due to a law project, discussed since 2006, "which would impose on all service providers filtering each domain's connexion to remove all inappropriate, in the name of the struggle against pedo-pornography and defamation and the defense of copyrights".

Ain't that just great, Aussies? Who knows, maybe you'll have Britain-esque anti-defamation laws soon.

Not that South Korea is much better; if anything, it's even worse, as RWB accuses SK of using "disproportionate methods of regulation". Many will remember the January 07, 2009 arresting of a South Korean blogger, his "crimes" being affecting "economic exchanges in the markets" and the "credibility of the nation" (wait, they had any?) due to economic articles he'd published on a public discussion forum.

He's now facing up to five years in prison, just for sharing random information. It's not like he stole blueprints to a power plant or divulged some top-secret codes; he just shared random market information. Apparently that's enough to throw him behind bars to rot for the next half-a-decade. Sigh.

Source: Le Journal de Montreal, p. 17 / Thursday, March 12, 2009


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