Just when you thought rock legend Dave Grohl couldn't get any cooler, he went and brought an eight-year old kid onstage to play drums for a cover of Queen's "We Will Rock You" with the Foo Fighters. And, it wasn't just any kid, it was his own daughter, Harper. Read the rest
Nanna Árnadóttir (twitter) explains how to speak English with such a good Icelandic accent that even natives will be fooled. (via MeFi) Read the rest
YouTubers Hannah Hart, Grace Helbig, and Mamrie Hart try out some of the strangest Icelandic candies out there. Read the rest
Though the October polls that predicted a great showing for the Pirate Party in the Icelandic elections turned out to be wrong, that election did end with a deeply divided parliament that has been unable to find enough common ground upon which to form a new government. Read the rest
On October 25, thousands of Icelandic women went home at 2:38PM, after 86% of their work-days had passed, to protest the fact that they only earn 86% of their male counterparts' wages. Read the rest
Last April, the Icelandic government nearly toppled when Parliament was dissolved, after the Panama Papers revealed that Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson was laundering money with Mossack Fonseca -- only fear of the popular groundswell for the Pirate Party drove the establishment to keep the government limping along -- until now. Read the rest
In 2012, more than two-thirds of Iceland's population ratified the most democratically crafted constitution in world history, written in public and drafted by a representative committee of 1,000 Icelanders; now in a stirring video in the leadup to the next national election, Icelanders are calling on one another to only vote for candidates who'll take action on the constitution the nation voted for. (Thanks, Larry!) Read the rest
All nine of the top Icelandic bankers from the Kaupþing market manipulation case have been found guilty by the country's Supreme Court, which reversed the district court that had acquitted two of the defendants last year. Read the rest
With the Icelandic Pirates crushing it in the polls and set to form the next government of a sovereign, carbon-neutral, strategically located nation, it's worth asking how a party whose two issues -- internet freedom and copyright reform -- are wonky, minority interests rose to prominence. Read the rest
A tourist who visited Iceland couldn't figure out what address to use to send a letter to someone, so they drew a map. Their letter was mailed to a farm in Hvammsveit, West Iceland, with a cute little drawing instead of an address, and the intended recipient still got it. Read the rest
Bowing to intense pressure from elves and the people who believe in them, the government of Iceland will unearth a purportedly magical “Elfin Lady Stone” buried by highway workers by mistake. The inadvertent burial of their sacred site seriously pissed off the mythical creatures, according to reports. Read the rest
His name is Gummi Ben. The BBC reports on a remarkable day for the 330,000-strong island nation.
(Edit: sorry about the hinky Streamable embed; open video in a new window)
Gummi Ben, who became a commentator after hanging up his boots in 2009, has been fending calls off all day.
"It's been quite strange and actually hectic, because the phone hasn't stopped ringing," he told the BBC.
"But I'm really enjoying it! It's part of the job."
Translation: "*screams*. My voice is gone, but it doesn't matter. We have come forward, in this tournament, and never, not once have I ever felt so good" Read the rest
Iceland's elections are publicly funded, with funds awarded based on polls of the electorate; the Pirates have consistently polled higher than any other party, and the incumbent coalition (whose parties are polling in the single digits) has been scrambling to avoid a general election after the Panama Papers revealed that he had secret offshore accounts that benefited from his bailout of Iceland's planet-destroying banks. Read the rest
Since the International Modern Media Institute was founded in 2011 it has been an independent watchdog and advocacy group working to promote and protect freedom of expression and freedom of information.
The Icelandic Parliament resolved unanimously to make Iceland a Safe Haven for freedom of expression and freedom of information. These intended legal protections promote whistleblowing, journalism and online rights. It is local in scope but global in impact.
Over the last week the world has witnessed the revelations of the Panama Papers making public the offshore dealings of politicians and business leaders. Offshore tax havens serve two functions; to avoid tax and to hide ownership. Already, in Iceland, the Prime Minister has been forced to resign as a consequence of these reports which unveiled his offshore dealings.
The Panama Papers were the result of a whistleblower coming forth with information and a huge team of investigative journalists working to verify data and coordinating its reporting. The safe haven initiative aims to encourage and promote governmental transparency, holding power to account, empowering citizens and thereby democracy.
IMMI conducts legal research, advocates for legislative reform and is an active participant in working groups established to implement a legislative framework in Iceland where journalism and online rights are protected and supported. This includes drafting and implementing an act on whistleblower protection, fighting to remove data retention from Icelandic law, drafting and promoting legislation on the limited liability of intermediaries and a host of other measures.
In order to protect democracy, real and meaningful democracy, freedom of expression and freedom of information must to be protected, ensuring access to information and freedom of the media. Read the rest