From Iceland — Government Buys Ads Praising Itself With Tax Money

Government Buys Ads Praising Itself With Tax Money

Published January 26, 2016

Andie Sophia Fontaine
Photo by
TommyBee/Wikimedia Commons

The Icelandic government bought several full-page ads praising its own accomplishments, at a cost of about 2.3 million ISK.

Kjarninn reports that the government bought full-page ads in the newspapers Fréttablaðið Morgunblaðið, Viðskiptablaðið, DV and Fréttatíminn. They also bought ad space on the website Eyjan, which is owned by former Progressive city councilperson Björn Ingi Hrafnsson. These ads praised the government by contending that purchasing power has increased in Iceland.

The ads drew a lot of attention, although maybe not entirely the kind of attention the government was hoping for. Social Democrat MP Katrín Júlíusdóttir filed a set of formal questions to Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson, asking about how much these ads cost.

The government has responded that the ads cost a grand total of 2.3 million ISK. They added the caveat that the purpose of the ads was to point out for consumers to pay attention to prices; that things cost less in a free market.

How convincing these ads have been playing out with the general public is as yet uncertain.

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