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North Korean Business Park Getting Internet Access 46

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the and-then-the-revolution dept.
Daniel_Stuckey writes "A business park in North Korea will soon have (limited) access to the Internet, according to news reports. The Register wrote that an industrial park in the Kaesong Industrial Region will house Internet-connected PCs by the first half of this year. The Daily NK explained that the first step to connectivity will be an Internet cafe with 20 computers but afterward company offices will also be connected. They quoted a spokesperson from the Ministry of Unification — a department of the South Korean government that works on unifying the two Koreas — as saying, 'We are planning to launch the basic level of Internet services at the Kaesong Industrial Complex starting in the first half of this year,' and adding, 'Officials and employees in the North's border city will be able to use most of the online services now available in South Korea.'"
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North Korean Business Park Getting Internet Access

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  • by PPH (736903) on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @11:55AM (#46229031)

    ... Netflix will be throttled. They will be hiring Verizon to provide broadband.

    • No they wont.
    • Re:But ... (Score:4, Funny)

      by Thanshin (1188877) on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @12:31PM (#46229401)

      At least that would be coherent with other behaviors of that country, like three generations life imprisonment in torture camps for arbitrary reasons.

      Forcing their population to use Verizon broadband might be a bit over the top, though.

    • Netflix will be blocked. The N. Korean regime is hellbent on stopping the cultural invasion from all forms of media.

      No. Expect N. Korea to take the connection and firewall it off with a *white list*

  • by Akratist (1080775) on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @12:10PM (#46229181)
    For anyone who is complacent or unconvinced about the value of the internet in terms of providing a meaningful political dialogue, political education, or otherwise serving as a tool of the people to at least aid in political expression, look at the places where it is controlled and how politically repressive those places are. If nothing more, it should show that attempts to restrict or regulate it may indicate that those parties attempting to do the restriction or regulation may not have your best interests at heart.
  • by smileytshirt (988345) on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @12:14PM (#46229223) Homepage
    Having been a bit of a North Korean watcher for a few years I don't think this will change much. There is already internet access available to certain groups of people in North Korea with restrictions applying to each group. Examples include:

    Tourists who are allowed to bring in mobile phones, and for an exorbitant fee can have a North Korean SIM card with access to the wider internet - even less restricted than China's firewalled internet access

    Certain students, academics and professionals may access the internet in a supervised format. Areas of research and specific websites must be submitted to a human monitor who must approve the sites and who remains in the computer room to ensure users only access what has been approved

    And of course the higher level officials are assumed to have internet access

    Other than that, the general population only has access to the North Korean intranet - which among other things has government sites, game sites and even a dating website. Any new access to the wider internet is surely going to come with very strict controls and monitoring.
    • Thanks for putting that information in concise way.

      One more group that has to be added is government/army services involved in electronic warfare:
      http://www.theguardian.com/tec... [theguardian.com]

      • by oodaloop (1229816)
        The North Korean military hacking unit is in China. They're quite sophisticated, actually, but use Chinese internet infrastructure, not North Korea's.
    • by jandrese (485)

      Certain students, academics and professionals may access the internet in a supervised format. Areas of research and specific websites must be submitted to a human monitor who must approve the sites and who remains in the computer room to ensure users only access what has been approved

      That really puts the people who complain about the UK being a nanny state into contrast doesn't it? Just imagine what could be done if all of that manpower could be used towards doing useful work instead.

      • by operagost (62405)
        The UK is still a nanny state. NK is just the Louise Woodward of nannies.
      • by lucm (889690)

        Just imagine what could be done if all of that manpower could be used towards doing useful work instead.

        Just imagine what could be done if all the manpower in Silicon Valley could be used towards doing useful work instead of creating clones of flappy birds and iPhone fans (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=18RuLED2nQM).

    • This is likely correct (I have likewise been somewhat of a NK watcher), but one important point. The general population doesn't have access to the NK intranet. Those that do aren't quite the country's elite, but still represent the better-off social class. Most access to the intranet happens through universities and major organizations, while close to half of NK's population lives outside cities, and in cities other than Pyongyang the infrastructure is nearly non-existent. Sariwon and Wonsan can be barely m
  • by arctus (2753027)
    What do you do at the office if you can't procrastinate for 8 hours using partially open internet access?
  • by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @12:34PM (#46229417)

    Kim Jung Un invented it, after all.

  • Glorious Leader permitting all searches including the terms "best" "Korea" "Glorious Leader" and "harmony." any other keyword, or connection to other sites, stunning "ocsic" router of Pyongyang Research and Cloning Institute will reject.

  • by Minwee (522556) <dcr@neverwhen.org> on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @12:46PM (#46229543) Homepage
    All of your TCP packets need to be written down on a 3x5 card and hand delivered to the nearest government office for manual processing before being typed in and sent to uunet via dprkvax. This will lead to a tiny slowdown in network access, but nothing that you should notice.
    • by SpzToid (869795)

      How is this any different than programming in FORTRAN? At least that's how I learned FORTRAN; has anything changed?

      Now would you kindly please step aside so I can water that last patch of the lawn?

    • by BUL2294 (1081735)
      The DPRK definition of "router".
  • by Culture20 (968837) on Wednesday February 12, 2014 @01:38PM (#46230031)
    What do they make, oxymorons?
    • by Solandri (704621)
      It's a joint venture by South Korean businesses building factories in North Korea to use North Korean labor. Funding for its construction was from South Korea, most of the managers are South Korean, most of the workers are North Korean. It provides the few North Korean managers with experience in running an entrepreneurial business, as well as provides the workers some badly needed income. It hasn't gone all that smoothly - the North has unilaterally shut it down on several occasions for random reasons,
  • They quoted a spokesperson from the Ministry of Unification — a department of the South Korean government that works on unifying the two Koreas

    First amazing that they even have this. Doesn't seem like they are really getting anywhere. What do they do from day to day? Call up NK and ask?

  • Didn't they yank all the workers out of the business park a while back? I thought SK business were abandoning their ventures there?
  • Keep in mind, US sanctions against North Korea mean key technologies make it difficult to import computers. Although these days there's so many ways to get mobile devices that might be a moot point.

    Last year we were in South Korea and we went on one of the popular "DMZ Tours". So, on the tour you go to Dorason Station, which is the jumping off point from South Korea onto the rail line into North Korea, and then after that you go up a hill and look into North Korea. From that overlook, you can see Kaesong

  • Slashdot Beta..........
  • when any story about getting basic Internet service is a big enough issue to get to /..

    Yeah so really I am surprised there is any Internet service in NK

  • It's good, that people will access internet service and save time

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