Fartashphoto's Blog

Father of the Internet

Posted in Uncategorized by fartashphoto on July 9, 2010

The “Enemies of the Internet” list drawn up again this year by Reporters Without Borders presents the worst violators of freedom of expression on the Net: Saudi Arabia, Burma, China, North Korea, Cuba, Egypt, Iran, Uzbekistan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, and Vietnam.

Some of these countries are determined to use any means necessary to prevent their citizens from having access to the Internet: Burma, North Korea, Cuba, and Turkmenistan – countries in which technical and financial obstacles are coupled with harsh crackdowns and the existence of a very limited Intranet. Internet shutdowns or major slowdowns are commonplace in periods of unrest.

Saudi Arabia and Uzbekistan have opted for such massive filtering that their Internet users have chosen to practice self-censorship.

Iran Internet censorship is delegated to ISPs who attempt to filter contents critical of the government, pornographic websites, political blogs, and especially recently women’s rights websites, weblogs, and online magazines. Bloggers in Iran have been imprisoned for their Internet activities.

For economic purposes, China, Egypt, Tunisia and Vietnam have wagered on a infrastructure development strategy while keeping a tight control over the Web’s political and social content (Chinese and Tunisian filtering systems are becoming increasingly sophisticated),

In Turkey, taboo topics mainly deal with Ataturk, the army, issues concerning minorities (notably Kurds and Armenians) and the dignity of the Nation. They have served as justification for blocking several thousand sites, including YouTube, thereby triggering a great deal of protest. Bloggers and citizens who express themselves freely on such topics may well face judicial reprisals.

In November 2007, “Father of the Internet” Vint Cerf stated that he sees Government-led control of the Internet failing due to private ownership. Many internet experts use the term “splinternet” to describe some of the effects of national firewalls.

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