Friday, March 12, 2010
Enemies of the Internet
The highly-reputed French association named Reporters Without Borders describes itself as follows:
Reporters Without Borders is present in all five continents through its national branches (in Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland), its offices in New York, Tokyo and Washington, and the more than 120 correspondents it has in other countries. The organisation also works closely with local and regional press freedom groups that are members of the Reporters Without Borders Network, in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Belarus, Burma, Colombia, Democratic Congo, Eritrea, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, Peru, Romania, Russia, Somalia, the United States and Tunisia.
Reporters Without Borders is registered in France as a non-profit organisation and has consultant status at the United Nations.
In 2005, the organisation won the European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought.
Today, March 12, happens to be their World Day Against Cyber Censorship.
The association has just published a report entitled Enemies of the Internet. Here's a paragraph that mentions Australia:
Among the countries “under surveillance” are several democracies: Australia, because of the upcoming implementation of a highly developed Internet filtering system, and South Korea, where draconian laws are creating too many specific restrictions on Web users by challenging their anonymity and promoting self-censorship.
Browsing through the complete report (available on their website), we're obliged to admit that Australia is not exactly in nice company: Saudi Arabia, Burma, China, North Korea, Cuba, Egypt, Iran, Uzbekistan, Syria, Tunisia, Turkmenistan and Vietnam.
BREAKING NEWS: The story about so-called "enemies of the Internet" has been reproduced widely in the French press, accompanied by the following map: