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Iceland Ministry of Interior wants to filter the Internet

27 February, 2013
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This article is also available in:
Deutsch: Island: Innenministerium will Internetfilter einrichten


Ögmundur Jónasson, Iceland's Minister of Interior, intends to support an "anti-shield" against online pornography, that is Internet filters, to prevent Internet users from accessing certain sites.

Although Jónasson has until now promoted progressive legislation, he is now trying to introduce a law to stop the access to online pornographic images and videos by young people through computers, games consoles and smartphones, a legislation that would do great harm to freedom of expression and speech.

Iceland already has a law forbidding the printing and distribution of pornography which has not yet been updated to cover the Internet. The methods that are considered include blocking access to pornographic website addresses and making it illegal to use Icelandic credit cards to access pay-per-view pornography.

The bill that Jónasson supports has already created doubts and many companies are thinking seriously of whether to have their business hosted in Iceland because they fear the country's laws could lead to a full censorship system. The bill would put Iceland at the same level as Iran or China in terms of censorship.

"Modern electronic commerce requires cryptography, and cryptography precludes centralised censorship, even of harmful material. The way to combat gender inequality and sexual exploitation is to increase public awareness and encourage open discussion, not stifle information flows and violate telecommunications privacy," said Smári McCarthy, the executive director of Iceland Modern Media Initiative.

Fortunately, it appears that the Iceland Parliament will not pass the bill and the parliamentary committee having the task to discuss the draft bill is looking into alternative ways to help parents to protect their children from online porn, mainly through free porn-filter software and educational means.

Iceland's internet 'porn shield' is misguided and unworkable (15.02.2013)
http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/feb/15/iceland-anti-porn-...

Iceland considers pornography ban (13.02.2013)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/iceland/9866949/Icela...

 

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