Countries That Block Social Media [GRAPHIC]

Countries That Block Social Media [GRAPHIC]

Americans and citizens of most countries in the world take checking their Facebook page or firing off a few tweets to express their opinion as a natural right, and very few think about less fortunate people who live in countries with authoritarian government who regularly block social media. According to a recent report from Dadaviz, there are actually only six countries across the globe who actively block social media networks: China, Iran, North Korea, Pakistan, Turkey, Vietnam.

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North Korea total social media ban

Reclusive, impoverished North Korea is the only country in the world with a total ban on social media. The other five countries have countries have bans in place, but in many cases, users can use VPNs to redirect internet traffic to get access to blocked social media websites. North Korea, however, has instead buily their own “internal internet” that is not connected to the global worldwide web.


Unlike the other five countries, Turkey is already a NATO member and also an applicant to the European Union. Turkey is also a functioning democracy, at least until Erdogan’s recent power grab, which makes the nation’s full blockage of social media on a semi-regular basis very concerning.

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However, Turkey’s banning of social media is not a law that is always enforced. Turkey selectively enforces bans of social media depending on the political/social climate. The ongoing social media ban in Turkey today (which may be starting to be lifted) was put in place after a terrorist group that held a state prosecutor hostage began to distribute images of the crisis via the internet.

The hostage situation was eventually concluded with the death of the prosecutor and his kidnappers. The government argued that the republishing of the images was basically supporting terrorism, and since social media did not limit the distribution of the images, they had to be closed down.

Back in March 2014, Turkey banned Twitter after public uprisings abouty government corruption scandals. The government in Ankara also blocked YouTube for more than 2.5 years after a video supposedly insulting the founder of modern Turkey was uploaded.


China has long had a policy of internet censorship, and has an outright ban on Western social media such as Facebook and Twitter. The Chinese government claimed that social networking platforms were used to coordinate anti-government protests in Xinjiang and elsewhere, as well as spread rumors that are harmful to the state, so they banned them.

However as reported by Valuewalk, Facebook is still actively involved in China despite being banned back in 2009, and the company is reporting revenue strong growth in the region despite the ban. Twitter, which is also banned in China, recently opened an office in Hong Kong that will serve as the head office for the greater China region.

Pakistan, Vietnam and Iran

These three countries all have authoritarian governments that seek to control the news and information flow to their populations. Social media is an obvious threat to their control of information, so the governments in these Pakistan, Iran and Vietnam have banned these platforms. However, like in China and Turkey, many residents of these countries do have at least some access social media via VPN networks.

[via: BusinessInsider]

[Source: Dadaviz]

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  1. Up to my knowledge this trend is increase day by day and in 2015 it will expand to more countries. In this article the author provide facts and figures only about social platforms. But if you look deeply than you come to know there are various news website which are banned in Russia and other countries too. I think this all are going to get more control on information but they forget that this is 21st century and there are various tools available which you can use to protect your freedom. I am using VPN to access all social media and other streaming websites like Netflix, Hulu and Pandora. You can also use this tool from VpnRanks.

  2. Now in 2015 many other countries facing the same issue of social media accessing like, Turkey where twitter is blocked recently and no internet user can access it. But where is a issue there is always a solution and using a vpn is the best option for this issue. Just use fast and good vpn with US ip and unblock

  3. Thanks for your infos. I just know China and North Korea are blocking social media, not turkey, Pakistan and Vietnam. I heard UAE is also blocking Facebook, Twitter. I don’t know whether it is true. As one guy lives in China, It is so bad. I can’t keep connected with world, can’t get latest news around World. My ears and eyes are almost blinded and deaf. I tried many VPN services, but most of are not working well. Finally, I got FlyVPN. All things are fine. VPN is my one of necessities in my life.

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