What countries have governments that have not/are not currently planning to pass stuff like SOPA and don't mess with how people use the internet? Ones that won't block websites at the drop of a hat, for completely bogus/absurd reasons?
Estonia prides itself on running a progressive show with first class support for the Internet (voting for the government takes place online, for example), they stream almost-hard porn on TV before the watershed (it's just not in their culture to care about these things – as a UK citizen, was shocked to find a lesbian movie playing on terrestrial there), English literacy is amazing in the capital (Tallinn) especially among young people, rental and general prices for everything are dirt cheap, and intra-Europe flights are dirt cheap (return ticket to Ireland for €100), with easy access to Russia too (visa free 3 day trips to St Petersberg by ferry).
Not to mention Tallinn is one of the most amazingly relaxing old towns packed with coffee shops with free fast wifi.
Finland (next door neighbour) also has awesome broadband/free wifi penetration, only the MPAA's paw marks have been left all over their courts recently (The Pirate Bay is blocked by several major ISPs in the country)
Aren't our ISP's blocking the pirate bay nowadays after a court order? Just googled a bit and I see some articles about it (I'm Dutch but not currently living in the Netherlands so not 100% up to date).
Not only that, but Stichting BREIN (sponsored by the US media industry) also successfully got the court to gag a Dutch political party from mentioning The Pirate Bay in the context of circumventing blocks, on their website.
Taken from Wikipedia:
Network neutrality (also net neutrality, Internet neutrality) is a principle that advocates no restrictions by Internet service providers or governments on consumers' access to networks that participate in the internet.
I'd stay away from DE if you're looking for a free net.
I'm a supporter of the Pirate Party, but the recent history (think Ursula von der Leyen, who constantly tries to ruin different ressorts with braindead ideas) shows that the state considers censorship a viable approach to 'problems'.
In addition, the EU/Brussels are delivering far too much to the US on a silver plate (travel data was the last news) and really like their data retention laws.
The EU is not yet lost, but tries hard to make a lot of wrong decisions.
Iceland is a special case here, as they built that into their constitution as part of their fight against the EU-attempt to control the country during the financial crisis. Or so I read. But as wikipedia is stating that icelands ISPs censor the internet currently, I'm not sure about the current situation there. But still, maybe a country to look further into.
When we're talking long term First World, Commonwealth etc. countries none seems to have as bad track record of Internet stewardship as Australia. It's also very expensive, they're at the extreme end of a few pipes.
Australian resident here, internet access is slow, overpriced (Example: $30AUDp/mo for 5GB including upload and downloads, after which you're slowed to 65kb/s until end of month), and seemingly constantly under threat of censorship or lawsuits against ISP's.
Allegedly the National Broadband Network currently rolling out will help alleviate the first two, but best case scenario leaves the latter hanging over our heads.
Romania is OK so far, plus it has cheap internet with great speed. There was a discussion to add some sort of (low) monitoring but haven't heard anything about this for some time, but so far no blocks or other internet limitations.
Poland is quite good, but we have to be wary of our government as it tends to pass laws that we just hate (and they wonder then why tens of thousand ppl are on the streets protesting against those laws [they worry more about being reelected next time than about IP rights so they take them down]). But we are also most invigilated country in entire European Union. Though who knows what will be happening soon, as it seems that we will once more end up on US Watchlist (this time because of big pharma).
From what I know Iceland is very good place in this regard.
Slovenia currently has no bans, no filtering, nothing. Broadband widely available. However, this might not be guaranteed in the future (but right now the government has too many other issues to deal with).
Denmark was one of the first countries to require ISPs to block sites like The Piratebay. The government have expanded the blocking to sites selling illegal drug( or at least illegal in Denmark), I'm unsure about gambling sites, but it's been a topic.
The Danish government also require ISP to log customers internet activities and store the logs for one year.
I can't comment on the other Scandinavian countries, but no, Denmark doesn't have a good record in this matter, in fact I would claim that it's only slightly better than China.