North Korea and Press Freedom

There are two prominent international rankings of press freedom: Freedom House and Reporters without Borders. As I have reported in the past (here and here), North Korea typically “wins” last place in both reports.  You can usually bank on it.

Well, this year I would have lost a lot of money. 

Although in May 2007 Freedom House awarded last place to the DPRK, DPRK Forum has pointed out that this year Reporters without Borders has awarded last place to Eritrea–Bringing the DPRK’s reign over both titles to an end.  The DPRK came in second to last in the RWB rankings this year. No doubt this will create some tension as historically the titles have been united under North Korea.  Freedom House and Reporters Without Borders will need to schedule a new round of competition immediately to sort out once and for all who is really the champion of last place in press freedom: North Korea or Eritrea.  This time, let’s keep Don King out of it.

On a personal note, the list of 10 worst countries in both of these surveys looks pretty much like my list of vacation destinations for the last five years: China, Iran, Zimbabwe, Burma, Turkmenistan, and North Korea.


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