Iceland can proudly boast the highest saturation of residents with internet access. More than 96% of Icelanders had regular access to a network last year and almost 95% of households could say the same, RÚV reports. Icelanders are also more likely than their European counterparts to be commenting on social networking pages, with 67% of Icelanders engaging in such online activity in comparison to 52% of other Europeans. Icelanders also connect regularly for banking, with 90% of internet users tending to their finances online. The country isn’t a leader in this regard, however, as 91% of connected Norwegians and Finns do their banking online. 32 European nations conduct research annually on the use of information and communication technology, both by individuals and companies. The results for all the countries surveyed are available from Statistics Iceland.
Three independent film makers have spent 130 nights over the past 3 years time-lapse photographing northern lights in 50 different locations across Iceland, reports RÚV. The images, which put together compose a roughly 30 minute long film by the name of Iceland Aurora is made from over 100,000 individual RAW High Res images. The film was entirely self-funded and done alongside full-time employment. It will be available as of next Tuesday on the film’s website but until then, check out the trailer for a taste.
Iceland’s agricultural output has been on the rise since 2007, discounting a considerable dip in 2013 according to a new report from the Icelandic Association of Horticulture Producers. Roughly 18,500 tonnes of vegetables are produced in Iceland annually and only 6,500 tonnes imported – save last year when the overall domestic agricultural production shrank to 12,000 tonnes. As is so often the case, poor weather was to blame. Potatoes compose roughly 2/3 of Iceland’s agricultural output, roughly 12,000 tonnes. But following what was arguably one of the most miserable and cold summers on record, the potato harvest of 2013 only
A portrait of Icelandic deputy MP and human rights activist, Freyja Haraldsdóttir, by Gabrielle Motola, has been selected for the Taylor Wessing Portrait Prize 2014. Freyja’s picture, part of Motola’s “Women of Iceland” photographic series, along with the other 59 portraits will be on display at London’s National Portrait Gallery until mid-February 2015. “The idea for the ‘Women of Iceland’ series was sparked by an article in the news about Iceland’s response to the 2008 financial crisis,” Gabrielle wrote on her website. “Icelanders were quoted as saying that a more ‘feminine’ approach to finance was needed. Curious, I began researching Icelandic women’s
On Wednesday, the organization Reporters Without Borders (RWB) issued a statement expressing its concerns with the perceived decline of freedom of information in Iceland during the last two years. Among matters of particular concern, the organization says it regrets that the Interior Minister’s assistant, Þórey Vilhjálmsdóttir, currently seeks the maximum possible libel penalty for two journalists at DV, saying that it “would set a disastrous precedent for freedom of information in Iceland.” They say that as the Ministry is in charge of human rights, Þórey “should be aware of her responsibilities in the domain of press freedom.” Interior Ministry official
Today, Alþingi voted for a law on the requirements made of bouncers, in bars, clubs and restaurants. The law is largely comparable to regulations which have applied since 2007. According to the new legislation, bouncers must have reached the age of 20. They must not have been found guilty of a violent or drug-related offense in the last five years before their employment. They must also attend training, focused on related legislation, how to handle scuffles and how to recognize the effects of drug use and illegal drug commerce.
Boys as young as fourteen year old use steroids to achieve a certain physical appearance, says Skúli Skúlason, Chair of the National Olympic and Sports Association’s drug committee, interviewed by RUV. Parents have worried about the drug use, he says. He claims that teenagers’ use of steroids is not caused by an ambition for achievements in sports, but by a focus on appearances. He cites the notion of “reverse anorexia,” also known as muscle dysmorphia: a disorder in which a person becomes obsessed with the idea that they are not muscular enough. Skúli points out that steroids are not mentioned