Freedom of speech on the Internet – assessed in different countries

Which country does not respect freedom of opinion, and where you can say whatever you want – Freedom House assessed this indicator in its report.

The American nongovernmental organization took into account restrictions on access to the network and the presence of pro-government “trolls” who try to manipulate discussions on the Internet. While noting the highest rate, the report says:

“This year, internet users in 41 countries have been physically assaulted in retaliation for their online activities.”

In addition, the authors of the study note that in 56 out of 70 countries, users, for their activity on the network, were arrested and some were convicted. This is a record number, 80%, according to APE-MPE, citing AFP. Another 20 countries are included in the list of those that periodically did not allow their citizens to the Internet.

Iceland turned out to be the most freedom-loving, confidently overtaking Estonia and Costa Rica. Moreover, it is the first state in the world to make Internet access an inalienable right of all its citizens.

But China, as it turned out, least of all other countries respects free speech online, moreover, it harshly suppresses dissident users.

The authors of the report accuse governments of all countries of using technology business rules to justify repression. They criticize Turkey and India, where legislation allows the removal of content deemed offensive or likely to affect public order.

Against the background of the study, Freedom House believes that the emergence of antitrust laws that can limit the influence of such tech giants as Facebook, Apple, Google is quite justified.

The brutal persecution of users for publications increased the number of countries seen in this from June 2020 to May 2021. A striking example is the disconnection of the Internet in Belarus and Myanmar. However, restrictions on user rights are observed all over the world, and this has been going on for 11 years, the NGO notes. For example, in Bangladesh, a student convicted of “anti-government activities” on social media was hospitalized as a result of beating. And a Mexican journalist was killed for posting a video on Facebook accusing the gang of murder.

The military junta that seized power in Myanmar on February 1 this year has come under fire for shutting down the internet, blocking social media, and forcing technology companies to transfer personal data to users.

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