For the first time in history, it is possible to transfer information from anywhere to anywhere. However, in many countries, the government is controlling what it’s people can and can‘t see. In order to do this, they use filters, which are like computer-generated checkpoints. They inspect foreign content that has been banned by the government, and block it from viewing.
For example, both France and Germany censor websites which deny the Holocaust – most likely because they want to make sure people realize what a terrible time it was and make sure it never happens again. David Irving, a British Holocaust Denier, was jailed for three years because of spreading his beliefs with speeches and the internet. Deborah Lipstadt, an author who fights Holocaust Deniers, was disheartened. "I am not happy when censorship wins, and I don't believe in winning battles via censorship... The way of fighting Holocaust deniers is with history and with truth," she told the BBC News website.
Syria filters Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Amazon, Hotmail, and Pro-Kurdish sites. They do this to stop the spread of Democracy into their country.
The United Arab Emirates censors any sites with Israel’s country code – “.il.” The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has lasted for a long time.
In Myanmar, the only legal areas are a small collection of government-approved sites. Internet cafes take screen caps every five minutes to make sure nobody is doing anything they’re not supposed to.
All private internet access is banned in Cuba. Using the internet through home can lead to five years in prison. Going against the government online can lead to 20.
Afghanistan is one of the poorest countries in the world. Less than 1% of people have internet access there. In January 2008, Sayed Pervez Kambaksh was sentenced to death for downloading a file defending womens rights.
In China, Google only displays websites pre-approved by the government. The Chinese blog services reject any blogs/websites with the word “Democracy.” With 63 internet users in prison, China has more people imprisoned for using the Internet than any other country. China even has its own virtual cartoon policemen – JingJing and ChaCha who pop up twice an hour to remind users of good web browsing habits in a “friendly” way. In 2007, more than 2600 websites were blocked.
Internet Censorship: All Over the Globe Omkar Mayur