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[FYI] Freedom House: As Internet Grows, Censorship Follows


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Freedom House: As Internet Grows, Censorship Follows  

Apr 28 2000: Government censorship of Internet sites is increasing, 
according to a new report from the human rights group Freedom House.  

The report, “Censor Dot Gov: The Internet and Press Freedom 2000”, 
says that as the World Wide Web develops at an exponential rate, 
governments in many countries, both developed and developing, are 
increasingly tempted to censor online information.  

Only 69 of the countries studied have a completely free media, while 
51 have a partly free media and 66 countries suffer heavy government 

Censorship methods include implementing licensing and regulation 
laws, applying existing print and broadcast restrictions to the 
Internet, filtering content and direct censoring after dissemination. 

In Asia and the Middle East, governments frequently cite protection 
of morality and local values as reasons for censorship.  

Countries where Internet access is mostly or totally controlled by 
the authorities include Azerbaijan, Belarus, Burma, China, Cuba, 
Iran, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Libya, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, 
Sierra Leone, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, 
Uzbekistan and Vietnam.  

The report also points out that even the US government unsuccessfully 
tried to control access to certain Internet sites with the 
Communications Decency Act in 1996.  

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