The Media Commission

The Media Commission is an independent administrative committee under the Minister of Education, Science and Culture. The Media Commission carries out the supervision according to the Media Law and attends day-to-day administration in the fields covered by the law.

The Audiovisual Media Services Directive governs EEA-wide coordination of national legislation on all audiovisual media. The Directive amends the Television Without Frontiers Directive in a number of areas including enlargement in scope, advertising rules, advertising “unhealthy“ foods and beverages in children’s programmes, and promotes areas including media literacy and access for persons with a hearing or visual impairment. The Directive also makes provision for; the designation of major events, short news reporting, promotion of European works, rules relating to product placement, jurisdiction issues, self and co-regulation, and independent national regulators. The Audiovisual Media Services Directive has been transposed by the Media Law 2011.

The Media Commission thus monitors advertising, sponsorship and product placement in Icelandic audiovisual media. Furthermore it monitors programming that can be harmful for a child’s development and the use of advance warnings in television programming. The Media Commission also issues broadcasting licences in Iceland. Certain information about the media market and media companies must be available to the public according to the Media Law. This information is gathered by the Media Commission and made availble on its website. This includes information about media ownership, list of media service providers and their rules on editorial independence.

The Minister of Education, Science and Culture appoints five persons to the Media Commission for the terms of four years at a time. Two representatives are appointed in accordance with the nomination by the Supreme Court of Iceland, one in accordance with a nomination by the standing Committee of Rectors of Icelandic Higher Education Institutions and one in accordance with a nomination by the National Union of Icelandic Journalists. The fifth is appointed by the Minister without nomination. Alternates are appointed the same way.

The members of the Media Commission are:
– Hulda Árnadóttir, Chair
– María Rún Bjarnadóttir, Vice Chair
– Finnur Beck
– Róbert H. Haraldsson

Alternates are:
– Marteinn Másson
– Kolbrún Sævarsdóttir
– Birgir Guðmundsson

Björn Vignir Sigurpálsson, representative of the National Union of Icelandic Journalists, resigned from the commission on 2 April 2019.

The Director of the Media Commission is Elfa Ýr Gylfadóttir.

A registration form in English is available here.

The Icelandic Media Act is available here.

Media Act No 38/2011

Act on the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service, a public-service medium, No 23/2013

For further information please contact us by e-mail: info(at) or phone us: +354 415 0415.