Iceland wants to block online adult content

The thought of having online X-Rated material blocked in your country may be a nightmare for many of you, so be thankful that you're not living in Iceland right now. A proposed bill by Iceland's Minister of Interior, Ögmundur Jónasson, states that all online X-Rated material should be banned. This is quite similar to South Korea, who itself is in the process of blocking out online adult content. The main argument proposed by the Icelandic government is that children that view online adult content are "at risk".

The Icelandic government launched a wide consultation process on X-Rated material. The investigation showed that children at an early age who are exposed to adult content showed similar signs to victims who have been traumatized by actual sexual abuse. The government concluded that the violent nature of adult content, and it's easy-accessibility thanks to the internet, led to an increased amount of sexual assaults. Halla Gunnarsdóttir, political adviser to Ögmundur Jónasson, stated "This move is not anti-sex. It is anti-violence because young children are seeing adult content and acting it out".

There are several ways that Iceland can follow through with its ban on online adult content. It is considering banning all IP addresses used by X-Rated sites, and also making it illegal to use credit cards to purchase the content through websites. It could also have active volunteers, like the 800+ in South Korea, who seek out these sites and submit them to the government to be banned.

While it's admirable that Iceland wants to ban online adult content to protect the children, its chances of doing so are very slim. According to Birgitta Jónsdóttir, a member of the parliamentary committee in Iceland tasked to discuss the proposal, the possibility of the bill being passed is "near zero", but they're looking into alternate ways to protect children from online adult content. They've proposed filtering software and programs to educate children and parents about the dangers of adult content. We'll wait to see what happens. Iceland has already banned the printing and distribution of X-Rated material, as well as strip clubs.

[via Daily Mail]