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Press Freedom Index 2011/2012
by Reporters Without Borders
Posted May 15, 2012

Freedom of the press?“This year’s index sees many changes in the rankings, changes that reflect a year that was incredibly rich in developments, especially in the Arab world,” Reporters Without Borders said today as it released its 10th annual press freedom index. “Many media paid dearly for their coverage of democratic aspirations or opposition movements. Control of news and information continued to tempt governments and to be a question of survival for totalitarian and repressive regimes. The past year also highlighted the leading role played by netizens in producing and disseminating news.

“Crackdown was the word of the year in 2011. Never has freedom of information been so closely associated with democracy. Never have journalists, through their reporting, vexed the enemies of freedom so much. Never have acts of censorship and physical attacks on journalists seemed so numerous. The equation is simple: the absence or suppression of civil liberties leads necessarily to the suppression of media freedom. Dictatorships fear and ban information, especially when it may undermine them.

The interesting fact is that the United States has fallen from 20th in 2010 to 47th in 2011/12. This rating is lower than Botswana, Slovenia, Niger, Mali and Jamaica . The United States owed its fall of 27 places to the many arrests of journalist covering Occupy Wall Street protests. More...