Document.no

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Document.no is a controversial Norwegian citizen blog, described by some as a right-wing, social conservative[1] website, which describes itself as a "blog on politics, public debate, media criticism and culture." The website's founder and editor is Hans Rustad (born 1950), a native of Eidsvoll and a former journalist.[2][3][4] The website holds positions that are critical towards some aspects of Islam[5][6] and immigration,[7] and often supportive of Israel.[8] The National Library of Norway classifies document.no under "current periodicals," and as focusing on culture, politics and political science.[9] The website was founded on 14 January 2003, and is owned and published by the limited company with the same name. By 2011, the website reached an audience of up to 40,000 unique visitors every week.[10]

The blog received global media attention in July 2011 as it turned out Anders Behring Breivik had been for a period of time commenter at the site in 2009.

History[edit]

Document.no began publishing as a blog first on the 14th of January in 2003. It moved from having the form of a blog to being a news site, as more authors as Christian Skaug and Nina Hjerpset-Østlie joined in. Today it is spoken of as an online magazine.[11]

The government of Norway forwarded in 2008 a resolution about a new blasphemy paragraph. Document.no was the most central of some other blogs to take on this resolution and protest. The resolution, which sought to further criminalize certain uses of free speech, was met with great resistance on the internet. Among the blogsters who protested against this resolution were Norsk Presseforbund,[12] Human-Etisk forbund.[13]

Reception[edit]

Aftenposten described it in 2009 as "an Islam-critical and Israel-friendly, so-called blue-blog".[8] The Norwegian conservative Muslim commentator Mohammad Usman Rana has called document.no "a right-wing populist and Muslimphobic interest group".[14] Helge Øgrim, editor of Journalisten, the journal of the Norwegian Union of Journalists, in July 2011 described document.no as an "anti-immigrant forum which has evolved into a hotbed of galloping Islamophobia."[15] Later, however, he opined in a comment on document.no that he might have gone too far in his criticism of Rustad.[16] The same month, the Financial Times described document.no as "a website rife with anti-Muslim and hard right rhetoric,"[17] and Lars Gule described it in the The Vancouver Sun as "a far-right web forum" that is "dominated by Islamophobic and anti-immigration commentary".[18][dead link] The New York Times described document.no as "a popular conservative Website."[19]

Yvonne Rundberg Savosnick, the former chairman of the Norwegian Union of Jewish Students, mentioned the site in a 2009 feature with the student newspaper at the University of Oslo, Universitas, because of its "critical view of the Norwegian press," although she stateed that she "rarely agreed with everything" on the website[20]

In 2011, Hans Rustad complained to the Professional Committee of the Press over an article in the newspaper Eidsvoll Ullensaker Blad, which described Rustad as a chief exponent of the "brown goo", stating that "it does not matter what the spill call themselves, this is very similar to Nazism" and concluding that "we do not want Behring Breivik, Rustad and other nutjobs to set the agenda". The committee criticized the article, emphasizing that it mostly discouraged the use of the term "Nazi" when referring to individuals.[21]

[22] According to the Financial Times, document.no is "a website rife with anti-Muslim and hard right rhetoric."[17] The Vancouver Sun describes it as "a far-right web forum" that is "dominated by Islamophobic and anti-immigration commentary".[18]

Impact[edit]

In 2009 the website was cited by Dagbladet as the main player, when for the first time in Norwegian history, "bloggers" were credited for successfully setting the national political agenda. Document.no had on a daily basis criticized a governmental proposed extension of §185 with regards to "hate speech so that the provision protects the need for a criminal law protection against qualified attack on religions and belief." The proposed bill was met with nearly no exposure in the mainstream media, until close to a month later, although it had been criticizised as an attack on democracy in Danish newspapers. Eventually the bill became criticized as attacking freedom of speech, and an online petition against it was supported by numerous notable figures in Norway. In the end, the government pulled the proposal back.[23]

Anders Behring Breivik[edit]

Anders Behring Breivik, the perpetrator of the 2011 Norway attacks, reportedly posted numerous posts on Document.no and praised the blog owner.[24] According to the BBC, "Anders Behring Breivik left racist, extremist right-wing comments along with fellow anti-Muslims" on the site.[22] He also attended an open meeting of "Documents venner" (Friends of Document), affiliated with the website, in the fall of 2009.[25] Breivik sought to start a Norwegian version of the Tea Party movement in cooperation with the owners of document.no, who initially expressed interest but ultimately turned down his proposal because he did not have the contacts he promised.[24] When Breivik was named as the arrested, the website became unreachable due to an extreme increase in traffic.[26] The blog owner distanced himself from the terrorist attack.[24]

Guest articles[edit]

In 2013 Bjørn Stærk, a columnist in Aftenposten, said that the most controversial contents of the website "are the guest articles. Geert Wilders has had several articles. Julia Caesar had an article about African immigrants' low intelligence. Critics use this as evidence that the editorial board of Document are racists and haters of islam. At the same time there is nothing in the commentaries by the website's permanent writers, which indicate this".[27]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dagbladet 4 February 2009, "Bloggere senket regjeringens blasfemi-forslag"
  2. ^ Norge i Dag 21 December 2012, "En ikke-representativ elite domminerer nyhetsbildet"
  3. ^ http://www.aftenposten.no/kul_und/article4184153.ece
  4. ^ Klassekampen 6 May 2006, "Vil ta friheten i forsvar"
  5. ^ "Terror in Norwegen - Das Netzwerk der Hass-Blogger". Der Standard. 2011-07-26. Retrieved 2011-07-26. 
  6. ^ "Norvège: Anders Behring Breivik aurait copié-collé des textes de Kaczynski, dit Unabomber". Slate.fr. Retrieved 2011-07-24. 
  7. ^ http://www.information.dk/274168
  8. ^ a b Henmo, Ola (20 February 2009). "Dynamittgubben". Aftenposten, A-magasinet (in Norwegian). p. 20. 
  9. ^ "Document.no : politisk analyse, kulturdebatt, mediekritikk" (in Norwegian). National Library of Norway. Retrieved 4 July 2010. 
  10. ^ Nipen, Kjersti (23 July 2011). "- Han ville organisere det nasjonalkonservative Norge". Aftenposten (in Norwegian). Retrieved 26 July 2011. 
  11. ^ http://www.journalisten.no/story/54119
  12. ^ http://fritanke.no/index.php?page=vis_nyhet&NyhetID=7279
  13. ^ http://fritanke.no/index.php?page=vis_nyhet&NyhetID=7284
  14. ^ Brandvold, Åse (13 March 2009). "– Bare Frp som vinner". Klassekampen (in Norwegian). Retrieved 31 October 2010. 
  15. ^ "Retter krass kritikk mot nettsted". Aftenposten (in Norwegian). 24 July 2011. Retrieved 24 July 2011. 
  16. ^ "Ikke en gang Åsne Seierstad". Document.no (in Norwegian). 6 September 2011. Retrieved 8 May 2012. 
  17. ^ a b Andrew Ward; Robin Wigglesworth (2011-07-25). "Killings sure to stir immigration debate". Financial Times. Retrieved 2011-07-25. 
  18. ^ a b Peter O'Neil (2011-07-27). "Expert says he confronted mass murderer Anders Behring Breivik about his views". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 2011-07-27. 
  19. ^ "Oslo Suspect Cultivated Parallel Life to Disguise ‘Martyrdom Operation’". The New York Times. 24 July 2011. Retrieved 7 September 2011. 
  20. ^ "Pensum". Universitas (in Norwegian). 21 January 2009. Retrieved 23 July 2011. 
  21. ^ http://www.pfu.no/case.php?id=2535
  22. ^ a b Goril, Liss (2001-09-11). "BBC News - Viewpoint: Attacks strike at Norway's values". Bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 2011-07-24. 
  23. ^ Thorenfeldt, Gunnar (4 February 2009). "Bloggere senket regjeringens blasfemi-forslag". Dagbladet (in Norwegian). Retrieved 31 October 2010. 
  24. ^ a b c NTB. "Tungt å bli rost av den terrorsiktede". DN.no. Retrieved 2011-07-24. 
  25. ^ "Som en liten gutt". bt.no. Retrieved 2011-07-24. 
  26. ^ "Document.no nede for telling". fvn.no. Retrieved 2011-07-24. 
  27. ^ Bjørn Stærk (2013-12-18). "Går alene mot strømmen". p. 41. 

External links[edit]