Had the pleasure this evening of hearing an artist, activist and member of Iceland's Parliament speak on Freedom of the Press and the creation of a Media Haven in Iceland....
Birgitta Jónsdóttir (born 17 April 1967) is a member of parliament of Althing, the Icelandic parliament, formerly representing the Citizens' Movement, but now representing The Movement. Her district is the Reykjavík South Constituency. She was elected to the Icelandic parliament in April 2009 on behalf of a movement aiming for democratic reform beyond party politics of left and right. Birgitta has been an activist and a spokesperson for various groups, such as Wikileaks, Saving Iceland and Friends of Tibet in Iceland. She acts as a spokeswoman for the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative.
Life and career
Born in Reykjavik, Birgitta is also a poet, writer, artist, editor, publisher, activist and internet pioneer. Her first poetry collection was published when she was 22 years old by Iceland´s biggest publisher, Almenna Bókafélagið, AB books, in 1989. Birgitta organized "Art against war" where a number of Icelandic artists and poets came out to protest the war in Iraq. Birgitta set up the first Icelandic online art gallery in 1996 for the Apple Shop in Iceland. Birgitta has participated in several international projects related to writing and activism including "Poets Against the War", "Dialogue among Nations through Poetry", and "Poets for Human Rights". She also edited and published the two international books The World Healing Book and The Book of Hope which contains writings by Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Rita Dove, Dalai Lama, Rabbi Michael Lerner, John Kinsella, and Sigur Rós. Birgitta is a founder of Beyond Borders Press and Radical Creations. Birgitta is a part of International Network of Parliamentarians’ for Tibet (INPaT)
On June 16th the Icelandic Parliament unanimously passed a proposal tasking the government to intoduce a new legislative regime to protect and strengthen modern freedom of expression, and the free flow of information in Iceland and around the world. The unanimous vote included all government members.
Birgitta Jonsdottir, the chief sponsor in parliament of the IMMI proposal said: "Iceland will become the inverse of a tax haven; by offering journalists and publishers some of the most powerful protections for free speech and investigative journalism in the world. Tax havens aim is to make everything opaque. Our aim it to make everything transparent." she said. http://immi.is/?l=en