March 30, 2009
A green-colored bar represents a status of "Free," a yellow-colored one, the status of "Partly Free," and a purple-colored one, the status of "Not Free" on the Freedom of the Net Index.
Recent years have seen an increase in internet use and mobile-phone penetration in Georgia, though the impact of the new technology in the political sphere remains limited. The government generally does not restrict user access to content, though two significant events during the coverage period of this report influenced the development of the internet in Georgia: the nine-day state of emergency in November 2007 and the conflict with Russia in August 2008.
The internet was introduced at the end of 1990s and experienced a boom after new services like DSL and ADSL became available at the beginning of 2004. Online news media are developing slowly, but more and more journals and newspapers are acquiring domain names and launching websites. The main reason for this slow development is a lack of knowledge about technology and web tools, as well as a poor understanding of how powerful a platform the internet can be. The most developed parts of the Georgian internet are forums, followed by blogs, social-networking sites, and various web 2.0 sites. Restrictions on content and access are neither definitively set nor effectively enforced by law, as evidenced by the huge variety of sites containing illegal material. Full text: http://www.freedomhouse.org/template.cfm?page=384&key=207&parent=19&report=79
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