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Infographic: Which nations filter Internet access (and how much)

Which world nations filter the Internet content available to their citizens? The answer might surprise you.

Which world nations filter the Internet content available to their citizens?

The answer might surprise you.

According to the Global Internet Filtering Map from the OpenNet Initiative, there are some expected opponents to a fully unadulterated version of the information superhighway -- such as China -- and plenty more you may not have expected, such as Tunisia.

Nations that demonstrate "pervasive" filtering of political content include:

  • China
  • Burma (Myanmar)
  • Vietnam
  • Iran
  • Tunisia
  • Syria
  • North Korea

Political content is defined as "content that expresses views in opposition to those of the current government, or is related to human rights, freedom of expression, minority rights, and religious movements."

Nations that demonstrate "substantial" filtering include:

  • Saudi Arabia
  • Ethiopia
  • Uzbekistan
  • Libya

Nations that demonstrate "selective" filtering include:

  • Thailand
  • Pakistan
  • Azerbaijan
  • Jordan
  • United Arab Emirates

Several other nations are listed as "suspected" and "no evidence."

But that's not the whole picture. For example, this is what the initiative has to say about the United States and Canada:

Though neither the United States nor Canada practices widespread technical Internet filtering at the state level, the Internet is far from “unregulated” in either state. Internet content restrictions take the form of extensive legal regulation, as well as technical regulation of content in specific contexts, such as libraries and schools in the United States. The pressure to regulate specific content online has been expressed in concerns related to four problems: child-protection and morality, national security, intellectual property, and computer security.

Want the full picture? Check out the map and its corresponding regional summaries. It's an interesting look into how different nations are dealing with our most layer of infrastructure.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com