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[FYI] Documentation of Internet Filtering in Saudi Arabia


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Documentation of Internet Filtering in Saudi Arabia  

Jonathan Zittrain* and Benjamin Edelman**  

Berkman Center for Internet & Society  

Harvard Law School  

Abstract: The authors connected to the Internet through proxy servers 
in Saudi Arabia and attempted to access approximately 60,000 Web 
pages as a means of empirically determining the scope and 
pervasiveness of Internet filtering there. Saudi-installed filtering 
systems prevented access to certain requested Web pages; the authors 
tracked 2,038 blocked pages. Such pages contained information about 
religion, health, education, reference, humor, and entertainment. See 
highlights of blocked pages. The authors conclude (1) that the Saudi 
government maintains an active interest in filtering non-sexually 
explicit Web content for users within the Kingdom; (2) that 
substantial amounts of non-sexually explicit Web content is in fact 
effectively inaccessible to most Saudi Arabians; and (3) that much of 
this content consists of sites that are popular elsewhere in the 


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