A few years ago some computer gamers based in Havana strung a small web of ethernet cables, from house to house, so they could play video games together. The network has grown quietly and today its called StreetNet: a bootleg internet for Havana with over 10,000 users. It was an innovation forged by necessity in a country where only 5 percent of the citizens have access to the uncensored internet. Watch the why Cuba’s internet is stuck in 1995.
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Cuba has some of the worst internet access in the world, with just 5 percent of Cubans able to access the uncensored web.
Since the communist revolution of 1959, the Castro regime has enforced a strict ban on all forms of information flow that challenge official policy and history. Enforcing such censorship has been relatively easy for an island nation that has a monopoly over all media outlets. But when the internet arrived in the ’90s, it complicated matters for the Castro’s.
As Cubans get a taste for the wonder that is the internet, they want more. As internal pressure grows, the Cuban regime will likely continue to find creative ways to offer the internet without losing control of the flow of information. The opening of Cuba to foreign investment and travel will only speed up the process.
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