The Internet and especially the blogosphere have become invaluable for the dissemination of information to the chagrin of political spinmeisters, the powers that be and repressive regimes trying to restrict the free flow of information.
With increasing internet penetration in the rest of the world blogging cultures have exploded in Asia and the Middle East. Unfortunately, as the Committee to Protect Journalists will tell you, the repressive governments in the region are moving just as quickly to stifle the information revolution before it gets started.
The CPJ just published their list of the 10 Worst Countries to Be a Blogger. Click on the link to discover why they made the list.
5. Saudi Arabia
The CPJ determined this dishonor list by compiling a series of questions compiled by Internet experts to assess blogging conditions worldwide.
* Does a country jail bloggers?
* Do bloggers face harassment, cyber-attacks, threats, assaults, or other reprisals?
* Do bloggers self-censor to protect themselves?
* Does the government limit connectivity or restrict access to the Internet?
* Are bloggers required to register with the government or an ISP and give a verifiable name and address before blogging?
* Does a country have regulations or laws that can be used to censor bloggers?
* Does the government monitor citizens who use the Internet?
* Does the government use filtering technology to block or censor the Internet?
These criteria were used by CPJ regional experts to nominate countries for this list. The final ranking was determined by a poll of CPJ staff and outside experts.