Reporters Without Borders Publishes 2012 'Enemies of the Internet'

Mar 12, 2012

Reporters Without Borders released its latest "Enemies of the Internet" list, the Associated Press reports, in which it classifies "enemies" as countries that severely curtail freedom of expression on and access to the web. The annual report also includes a list of states "under surveillance." The enemies list contains countries that are well known for blocking internet content, like China, North Korea, and Myanmar. Australia and France are listed as being under surveillance.

Australia had reportedly persuaded ISPs to create a national content-filtering system, and the government is still pursuing a system of mandatory content-filtering, whose criteria is allegedly "very broad." France appeared on the surveillance list last year for a series of criminal indictments of journalists. It remains on the list this year because of a law that could punish people who repeatedly download content illegally by revoking internet access.

Reporters Without Borders added Bahrain, previously under surveillance, to its enemies list, citing a news blackout and harassment of bloggers in efforts to suppress a yearlong Shiite-led rebellion against the Sunni monarchy. Libya was removed from the list of countries under surveillance. "In Libya, many challenges remain but the overthrow of the Gadhafi regime has ended an era of censorship," the report said.