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This Is Cuba's Netflix, Hulu and Spotify -- All Without the Internet

How media smugglers get Taylor Swift, "Game of Thrones" and the New York Times to Cubans every week.


In Cuba there is barely any Internet. Anything but the state-run TV channels is prohibited. Publications are limited to the state-approved newspapers and magazines. This is the law. But, in typical Cuban fashion, the law doesn’t stop a vast underground system of entertainment and news media distributors and consumers.

“El Paquete Semanal” (The Weekly Package) is a weekly trove of digital content — everything from American movies to PDFs of Spanish newspapers — that is gathered, organized and transferred by a human web of runners and dealers to the entire country. It is a prodigious and profitable operation.

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