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Defying Kim Jong-il: North Korea's digital underground

A fence along the North Korean border near Dandong, China. Photo/AP

North Korea's digital underground

The death of the despotic Kim Jong-il is one of the few truths the state has ever reported to North Koreans.

Like food and human rights, accurate information is scarce in one of what's long been one of the most secretive countries in the world.

The situation was made worse this year, with a new law that jails any citizen who telephones anybody outside the country, and banishes their family to internal exile.

And some already have, according to the Daily NK, a website based in Seoul, South Korea.

It's one of several new media organizations trying to crack the information barricade Kim Jong-il has erected around his repressive regime.

Turns out getting information in and out of the north is quite a cloak-and-dagger process, as journalist Robert S. Boynton writes in this month's edition of The Atlantic magazine.

  Listen to our talk with Robert now

Robert S. Boynton is a Professor with the Literary Reportage concentration, at the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute, at New York University.

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