Iceland - Media

In 1997 there were 168,000 main line telephones and 65,746 mobile cellular phones. Radio and radiotelephone communications are maintained with Europe and America and an underwater telegraph cable connects Iceland with Europe. The telephone, telegraph, and radio systems are publicly owned and administered. Icelandic radio broadcasts primarily on FM, via numerous public and private stations. Television was initiated in 1966. As of 1999 there were 5 AM and 147 FM radio stations and 14 television stations. In 1997 there were 260,000 radios and 98,000 television sets throughout the country.

There are five daily newspapers, four of which are published in Reykjavík. With their political orientation and average daily circulation in 2002, they were:


Morgunblaid Independence Party 53,000
DV Dagbla <eth> id NA 44,000
Tíminn Progressive Party 14,000
Althydubla <eth> id NA 4,000
Dagur-Tíminn (Akureyri) Progressive Party NA

Nondaily newspapers are published in Reykjavík and other towns. Various popular and scholarly periodicals are published in Reykjavík.

The law prohibits the production, showing, distribution, and/ or sale of violent movies, which are defined as containing scenes depicting the mistreatment or the brutal killing of men or animals. The Motion Picture Review Committee, which includes six members, is appointed by the Minister of Education and Culture to review all movies before they are shown. The committee also rates the films based on their suitability for children. By their evaluation, the committee may ban a film or require edits before its release.

The constitution provides for freedom of speech and press, and the government is said to respect these rights in practice.

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