ISP: Britney Booked
To many Americans, YouTube is just a place to see crazy cat videos, Chris Crocker crying over Britney, and, of course, "ISP."
It's hard to imagine YouTube as a threat to a totalitarian regime, but it can be. In Zimbabwe, human rights activists have posted videos to expose civil rights violations, torture, and abuse. Palestinians and Israelis alike have turned to the video sharing site to document their sides of a regional conflict.
I spoke to Abi Wright from the Committee to Protect Journalists, and I include a portion of that interview in today's episode of "Irregularly Scheduled Programming."
She told me that online journalism has become an increasingly important area for her organization. One in three journalists jailed in the world is an online journalist or blogger.
I asked her about students and citizen journalists, often the source of some of the most compelling online blogs and vlogs about war and its consequences.
"Those are the people who are most at risk," she said.
University students in Iran or Bloggers in Burma don't have the protection of an organization like CBS News behind them, but they continue to take risks to make sure we know they are facing in their daily lives.
And Abi pointed out that the problem is not exclusive to nations like Zimbabwe and Burma. Here in the United States, a blogger named Josh Wolf was arrested for refusing to hand over videotapes he recorded at a 2005 protest rally. Josh spent 226 days in jail for protecting his source materials.
If you want to learn more about the Committee's work, check out their website.