Freedom of the Press

Laos

Laos

Freedom of the Press 2002

2002 Scores

Press Status

Not Free

Press Freedom Score
(0 = best, 100 = worst)

82

Political Environment
(0 = best, 40 = worst)

34

Economic Environment
(0 = best, 30 = worst)

22

Criminalizing "misleading news" on the Internet was only the latest draconian effort by the government to restrict all news and information available to Laotians. The government owns all newspapers and broadcast media and tightly controls their content. In June, authorities announced they would introduce a new law requiring journalists to slant their coverage to favor the government. Rules already in effect subject journalists to 5 to 15 years in prison for not filing "constructive reports" or for "attempting" to obstruct the regime.