Censorship Maps



The Atlantic has created a censorship map based on ONI data. (I’ve archived a local mirror of the map and the accompanying article).

The accompanying article is a bit overzealous in its description of China but I liked that fact that the article specifically highlighted that Internet filtering is not exclusive to China but is spreading — essentially becoming the “norm” — worldwide. In terms of targetted content, porn is defintely targetted but the numbers are skewed by the fact that the use of commercial lists (there are open source lists too) allow countries to block a lot of porn easily. But in terms of significance porn is, in my opinion, of rather low importance. the blocking of several key sources of local language alternative information or an social movement group is much more important. The sgnificance of the content rather than the total number of sites blocked in category seems, to me, to be of more importance but is much harder to measure.

Wired also made a graphical representation of ONI data a while back.

The graphical representations are quite nice, it gets the concept across, but it is tough to make cross-country comparisons. The categories here are from our “global list” — a list that we test in all countries. As you can see countries that use commercial filtering products score higher because they block pre-defined categopries such as porn or gambling. They key sites though, not represented in this graphic , that countries target are local language, country or issue specific web sites. That said, this is a great effort in the right direction and we have some ideas for better cross-country comparison, so stay tuned.

One comment.

  1. […] internet censorship map (.pdf file of a map based on the ONI Internet Filtering Map. See also ICE:Internet Censorship Explorer for more […]

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