CPJ Blog

Press Freedom News and Views

South Korea

Blog   |   South Korea

In South Korea, deportation and defamation cases mark slide in press freedom

Korean-America writer and talk show host Shin Eun-mi is deported from South Korea after making positive comments about North Korea. (AP/Yonhap Shin Joon-hee)

South Korea has been hailed by many as a bastion for democracy and press freedom, especially in comparison to its twin to the north, which for years has been featured on the Committee to Protect Journalists' most censored list. However the recent stifling of critical voices in South Korea, including cases of arrests, deportation, and criminal defamation hearings in the past seven days, indicates a worrisome climate for press freedom and free expression.

Blog   |   South Korea

In well-wired South Korea, all is not well for press freedom

Under President Lee, more restrictive news media policies. (AP/Jo Yong-Hak)

CPJ ranks North Korea, with no independent media, as the world's most censored state. South Korea, with a wide-open press, seldom comes in for criticism. The high-tech, economic powerhouse is ranked as one of the most intensely wired nations in the world, and South Koreans enjoy near universal Internet access. But all is not well with the media on the southern half of the Korean peninsula. 

March 25, 2011 4:03 PM ET


Blog   |   India, Internet, Russia, South Korea, UK

Internet blotter

October 22, 2010 4:18 PM ET


Blog   |   Internet, North Korea, South Korea

Korea Times: Censorship on pro-NK websites tightens

The Korea Times documents the disturbing increase in censorship of writing about North Korea, with the police forcing website operators to remove 42,787 pro-North Korean comments. This may be due to an increase in North Korean government attempts to enter the online debate, but some point to the general anti-Net sentiment of the Lee administration.

Oh Chang-ik, director of the Citizens Solidarity for Human Rights, defined the sudden surge of censorship as "post trauma" of the Lee administration following nationwide candlelight vigils against U.S. beef imports in 2008.

This is one of the risks when "the Internet" is characterized as the medium of choice of one political group over another. Lee's predecessor, Roh Moo-hyun, was seen as the Net-enabled President; the Lee administration has been far more sceptical of online publications, and concerned about their affects on local and international politics. Such an increase in control can't be good for the freedom of the Korean press online.

September 11, 2010 4:40 AM ET


Social Media

View all »