Censorship in South Korea

Aug 17, 2012

When you think about enemies of free speech in Asia, North Korea comes to mind as the biggest villain. 

South Korea, on the other hand, has a robust democracy and a thriving economy. It’s perhaps the most wired country in the world, with the highest number of broadband connections per capita and an internet penetration approaching 90 percent.

But in the past few years, censorship in South Korea has increased dramatically. The number of censored articles doubled after President Lee Myung-bak took office in 2009, and the crackdown continued. 

South Korea police are regularly making Web administrators remove online posts, particularly those considered pro-North Korean.

Some journalists say they’re operating in the worst media climate for South Korea in the past three decades. To hear more about the media climate in South Korea, Global Journalist spoke to Steve Herman and Park Keeyongsin.

Steve is the Voice of America’s Northeast Asia bureau chief and President of the Seoul Foreign Correspondents Club.

Park is a professor at the Korea University Law School and one of the nine commissioners for the South Korean agency for communications standards. Park has testified as expert in high profile free speech cases and is the author of a new book Crime of Disseminating Truth.

Note: Video of the program will be posted once it's available.