The University of Michigan (U-M) released a gloomy report about growing Internet censorship on Tuesday, warning that even countries with high liberty ratings from human rights advocates like Freedom House are censoring Internet content with increasingly heavy hands.
Even the famously “nice” Scandinavian nations like Norway, regarded as the freest country in the world, have moved to “extremely aggressive” controls on a wide range of content.
According to the “Censored Planet” monitoring tool employed by the U-M, Norway is blocking content from human rights websites such as Human Rights Watch, in addition to tighter controls over material such as online gambling and pornography.
Censored Planet is a complex system that constantly and automatically scans the Internet for blocked websites and the denial of information requests. The team that developed the system released technical details of its operation along with their new white paper on Internet freedom. The designers said it