Internet freedom on decline

NEWS | 29 November 2016

Internet freedom around the world declined for the sixth consecutive year in 2016, according to a report by Freedom House. Iceland, the only Nordic country in the study, is rated as a global leader in free speech.

The 2016 Freedom on the Net report shows that more governments are aggressively targeting social media and communication apps than ever before.

Among Internet users, two-thirds (or 67 per cent) live in countries where criticism of the government, military, or ruling family was subject to censorship. A quarter, 27 per cent, live in countries where people have been arrested for publishing, sharing, or merely “liking” content on Facebook.

The report also points out that a number of countries, including democratic states, have passed laws that limit privacy and authorize broad surveillance, citing national security as an argument.

Source: Freedom on the Net 2016, Freedom House

Icelandic country report
Iceland has one of the highest rates of Internet and social media usage in the world, and Internet and digital media play a vital role in society there. In this study, in which Iceland is the only Nordic country included, the country is rated as “Free” and presented as an international leader in promoting free speech. The country profile covers, e.g., the ICT market, regulatory bodies, and the legal environment.

The report is available here
Country report for Iceland
About the Freedom on the Net series


About the report: Freedom on the Net 2016 covers 65 countries – accounting for almost 90 per cent of Internet users worldwide – in six regions around the world. The countries were chosen to illustrate Internet freedom improvement and decline in a variety of political systems. The numerical ratings and reports include a focus on developments that took place between June 1, 2015 and May 31, 2016. Read more about Freedom House.