Wed, Feb 20, 2013 - Page 9 News List

Iceland may be first Western democracy to ban online porn

By Tracy McVeigh  /  The Guardian

Many of those opposing the idea of the Web porn ban in Iceland are Web-freedom activists concerned at the idea of any Internet censorship and claiming it will lead to the kind of state interference in what people can access in countries such as Saudi Arabia, China and Iran.

The chairman of Iceland’s International Modern Media Institute is Birgitta Jonsdottir, an Icelandic member of parliament and former WikiLeaks activist, who claims the ban will stop companies hosting their business in Iceland. She declared a ban to be “unworkable and unfeasible.” Another WikiLeaks volunteer, International Modern Media Initiative executive director Smari McCarthy, has called the bill “fascist” and the interior minister “insane.”

However, the Icelandic government is serious in tackling the issue and could bring a ban to its statute books within the year.

“We are dedicated to gender equality, we are progressive and we are aware that we are more willing to be more radical than other governments, but I am sure they will follow our lead,” Gunnarsdottir said.

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