ONI Releases Belarus Internet Watch Report

Indirect methods to disrupt Internet access to opposition websites during elections may be the way of the future in democratically-challenged countries. Today the Open Net Initiative releases its first Internet Watch Report the Internet and Elections: The 2006 Presidential Election in Belarus. The report presents the findings of ONIs effort to monitor the Internet during Belarus recent presidential elections. Amidst fears that the authoritarian regime of President Aleksandr Lukashenka was going to close down Belarus political cyberspace during the elections, ONI testing found little evidence of systematic and comprehensive filtering, despite earlier ONI investigations that established the regimes capability to do so. ONI monitoring during the elections showed that, on average, opposition and independent media websites remained accessible throughout the monitoring period. ONI testing revealed a number of serious irregularities that disrupted access to certain opposition and independent media websites at strategic moments during and after the vote.

To read the report, click here.

Greetings and thank you for

Greetings and thank you for the interesting report.

The Internet is much more powerful than any government that tries to stop it. The government is centralized and cumbersome; the Internet is localized and flexible. The government may censor one site or a few sites, but others continue to function. Lukashenko’s government apparently tried its best to tamper with free expression on the Internet, but it did a woefully inadequate job. This is good news for the future of the political opposition in Belarus.

For some interesting discussions of international affairs, I invite you to http://www.panasianbiz.com

<strong>Excellent report on how Internet

Excellent report on how Internet was used in the recent elections in Belarus; good tips for the opposition!...

On May 3rd, OpenNetInitiative, which is a collaborative partnership of four leading academic institutions (University of Toronto, Harvard Law School, University of Cambridge, and Oxford University) released the first piece in their new report...

I don't think that our

I don't think that our opposition will pay attention to ONI's advices -- it is their virtue. News sites knew what to do when the problems appeared. At 20.00 on the 19th March our editor in chief said: "Well, now starting our second sercer" -- and BDG.by was partially accessible that night. Naviny.by, charter97.org, svaboda.org were accessible too -- I could read their blogs within Belarus.

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