Banning online pornography Legislate or educate?

Iceland could become the first Western democracy to attempt censorship of the internet under radical proposals to block online pornography according to recent media coverage.

Research in Iceland reveals that the average age at which children in Iceland see online pornography is 11.  The Icelandic government is considering whether or not to extend its ban on the publication and sale of printed pornographic material to online pornography.  The Government’s rationale is that much of mainstream online porn has become very brutal and violent in nature.

Perhaps one of the more revealing observations about the Icelandic Government’s intent comes from Halla Gunnarsdottir, a political adviser to Mr Jonasson, the Interior Minister, who observes, “At the moment, we are looking at the best technical ways to achieve this. But surely if we can send a man to the moon, we must be able to tackle porn on the internet.”

Whether or not legislation to ban online pornography can be effective, it is a fact that most private and public organisations now use sophisticated web filters that successfully restrict access to pornographic websites combined with considerable investment in educating their employees on acceptable use policies and practices.

This approach may well be one that can work across society with appropriate public awareness campaigns to educate citizens about acceptable behaviour online and encourage the deployment of the readily available technology that protects users from inadvertent exposure to pornographic, violent and other disturbing images and videos.

An Opinion Piece produced by Image Analyser:  www.image-analyzer.com

News coverage and opinion of Iceland Government’s proposal to ban online pornography

 

Daily Telegraph

 

Guardian


CNN