This World Map Shows Where Press Freedom Is Strongest And Weakest

Reporters Without Borders has published its 2014 World Press Freedom Index, which measures the freedom of information and journalists in 160 countries around the world.

Finland tops the index for the fourth year running, followed by Netherlands and Norway. America fell 13 places to 46th for various reasons (Here’s a interactive list of the rankings).

The organisation describes countries at the bottom of the list — Turkmenistan, North Korea, and Eritrea — as “news and information black holes and living hells for the journalists who inhabit them.”

An interesting note: Edward Snowden told The Washington Post in May that he wanted to apply for asylum in Iceland or some other country “with strong internet and press freedoms.”

The former NSA contractor had gone from Hawaii to Hong Kong on May 20. As you can see, China is black on this index. Snowden said he wanted to go to Latin America — where only three countries have satisfactory press freedom according to the index — and ended up in Russia, where a disturbing number of journalists have been killed while reporting.

So not only did he take the worst possible route from Hawaii to a country with Internet and press freedoms, he now literally lives in a country “where everything I do and say is recorded.”

The 2013 map of the global freedom of Internet is quite similar to the one for press.

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