Denmark wants to censor the Internet
It is not new, but it is the news!
To begin with, let’s introduce you to the background of the story, so you understand why I can’t but rage about it.
Fie Laursen, an Instagram blogger, posted a suicide note in her account saying she couldn’t take it anymore and wanted to say goodbye to this cruel world. Considering that her followers make together about SEVEN percent of the Danish population, it definitely got a lot of attention. The post received around thirty thousand likes and over eight thousand comments before the family deleted it.
The thing is that after this incident, the Danish government suddenly got aware of what the younger generation can see on the Internet. Mainly from the celebrities of a new type. What’s a new-type celebrity, you may ask? Well, these are people famous for being famous, that’s it. Laursen got known after she told a sad story of how she had been bullied at school and appeared on TV. She lied, but now it doesn’t matter. More than three hundred thousand followers she has matter.
And the government decided it’s just about time to introduce censorship on the Internet. Minister of Children and Education Pernille Rosenkrantz-Theil told the BBC that the government wanted influencers to have an “editorial responsibility” in line with the standards of the “old press.” How do like it: “old press” in the 21st century?
She said: “When you reach a certain number of people who are followers of your page then you will have the same responsibility as if you were an editorial person in a newspaper or on old media. So, for instance… the Danish ethical standards for the press are that you do not write about suicide or suicide attempts if it doesn’t concern the general public. We want these same standards applied to social media.”
If the influencer crosses the line and posts something the government doesn’t like and approve, the post will be deleted. How’s that? How should it work? Where is a democracy? Freedom of speech?
Ok, deep breath. Let’s go one by one. First of all, let’s agree that most of freshly-baked Instagram and YouTube celebrities are dumb and produce useless content. And they stay influencers as long as they can hype and shock the community. So such kind of posts that fuel up controversy is pure gold for them. Literally — they earn money with their profiles and their Internet popularity. It’s their fucking job! Useless, dumb, but hey, we don’t judge anyone. So why nobody tells me what to write (except for my editor, hi Alex) and I can say “fuck”, “shit”, and “suicide” as many times as I want. It’s not the problem of the content! If the reader is stupid enough to take such as a call to action, go for it.
Next. We live in the 21st century. In a democratic society. Not in China, thank god. And democracy means freedom. Freedom of religion. Of convictions. Of speech. Of choice. And censorship, because what Denmark suggests is exactly that, goes every way against it. Against everything, our fathers fought for! Against years of humankind development to a civilized society based on equality and value of each individual! Against common sense! This decision is nothing but regress. I don’t want to post in social media knowing I am being watched and judged. I don’t want to think that some sort of KGB has an eye on me and I am at risk of being punished.
It is the Internet. A place to share everything you want. Wise, stupid, evil, useless, valuable, beautiful, gross. EVERYTHING! I understand if it’s some sort of an ideological newspaper that exists for the sole purpose of praising the government and the regime. But Instagram is definitely not that. Not even close.
Just think about it. First, they delete what they consider dangerous and promotes violence and goes against the “old press” standards. Then they change the standards. Then they just start deleting everything that goes against their own personal preference or political positions. First, they watch after the influencers who have an impact on the public. Then they go after you who have three followers and opposition views. Is that what you want?
We are on the edge of something. This incident is very disturbing. Very. It is a sign of not such a bright future. With censorship, Big Brother, and the Ministry of Truth. Embrace yourself.