Press Freedom Index 2010: U.S. ranks No. 20, Eritrea worst
Reporters Without Borders, the journalism watchdog group, released its Press Freedom Index for 2010, tracking media freedom across 178 countries.
The report measures the violations of press freedom in the world, taking into account murders, imprisonment, physical attacks and threats as well as censorship, confiscation, searches and harassment.
The United States remained in the same position as it occupied last year: No. 20 on the list, behind most of the Northern European countries, New Zealand, Japan and Estonia.
Although Europe does have 13 countries in the top 20, 14 countries in the E.U. rated much lower in the rankings.
The announcement made it clear that economic development does not ensure press freedom. Despite similar economic growth, Brazil and India vastly differed in media rights. Brazil rose 12 places in the past year to No. 58, while India fell 17 places to No. 122.
The 10 worst countries for journalism are Rwanda, Yemen, China, Sudan, Syria, Burma, Iran, Turkmenistan, North Korea and Eritrea. These countries are "marked by persecution of the media and a complete lack of news and information," the report reads.
The index reminds me of a piece The Post's Raju Narisetti wrote this month about his favorite exhibit at the Newseum: the Journalists Memorial, which honors the 1,900 journalists who have died on the job since 1837.
"These are men and women who have given all they could so that some of us can count on a free press in a free society," Narisetti wrote.
| October 21, 2010; 10:10 AM ET
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