Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Committee to broker speech & obscenity issues receives icy reception

Headquarters of RÚV, the Icelandic National Br...Image via WikipediaA measure enacted by Iceland's Parliament that creates a government-controlled committee to mediate disputes among the public, news media and government involving potentially obscene content is drawing criticism from free speech advocates.

The press freedom-friendly nation (see "TUOL" post 8/19/10) passed the new law to shield children from sexually explicit materials and preserve press freedoms, but critics argue a government-run committee to enforce press freedom may inhibit the press. The law also drew fire because it does not exercise control over national broadcaster RUV.  Petitioners urging the president to veto the legislation so that a public referendum may be held have amassed 2000 signatures to date, according to the European Journalism Centre.

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