Censorship

Censorship

Overview
Censorship is the suppression of speech or other public communication which may be considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or inconvenient to the general body of people as determined by a government, media outlet, or other controlling body.

The rationale for censorship is different for various types of information censored:
  • Moral censorship is the removal of materials that are obscene
    Obscenity
    An obscenity is any statement or act which strongly offends the prevalent morality of the time, is a profanity, or is otherwise taboo, indecent, abhorrent, or disgusting, or is especially inauspicious...

     or otherwise considered morally questionable.
Discussion
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Quotations

"Assassination is the extreme form of censorship."

George Bernard Shaw|George Bernard Shaw, s:The Shewing-up of Blanco Posnet/PrefaceThe limits to toleration|"The limits to Tolerance", in preface of s:The Shewing-up of Blanco Posnet|The Shewing-up of Blanco Posnet

"Censorship ends in logical completeness when nobody is allowed to read any books except the books that nobody reads."

George Bernard Shaw|George Bernard Shaw

"All censorships exist to prevent anyone from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions. All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions. Consequently the first condition of progress is the removal of censorship."

George Bernard Shaw|George Bernard Shaw, Preface to Mrs. Warren's Profession

"Censorship reflects a society's lack of confidence in itself."

Potter Stewart|Potter Stewart

"The Internet treats censorship as a defect and routes around it."

John Gilmore|John Gilmore

"If we don't believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don't believe in it at all."

Noam Chomsky|Noam Chomsky

"Don't join the book burners. Don't think you are going to conceal thoughts by concealing evidence that they ever existed."

Dwight D. Eisenhower|Dwight D. Eisenhower, Speech at Dartmouth College|Dartmouth College (14 June 1953)
Encyclopedia
Censorship is the suppression of speech or other public communication which may be considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or inconvenient to the general body of people as determined by a government, media outlet, or other controlling body.

Rationale


The rationale for censorship is different for various types of information censored:
  • Moral censorship is the removal of materials that are obscene
    Obscenity
    An obscenity is any statement or act which strongly offends the prevalent morality of the time, is a profanity, or is otherwise taboo, indecent, abhorrent, or disgusting, or is especially inauspicious...

     or otherwise considered morally questionable. Pornography
    Pornography
    Pornography or porn is the explicit portrayal of sexual subject matter for the purposes of sexual arousal and erotic satisfaction.Pornography may use any of a variety of media, ranging from books, magazines, postcards, photos, sculpture, drawing, painting, animation, sound recording, film, video,...

    , for example, is often censored under this rationale, especially child pornography
    Child pornography
    Child pornography refers to images or films and, in some cases, writings depicting sexually explicit activities involving a child...

    , which is illegal and censored in most jurisdictions in the world.
  • Military censorship is the process of keeping military intelligence
    Military intelligence
    Military intelligence is a military discipline that exploits a number of information collection and analysis approaches to provide guidance and direction to commanders in support of their decisions....

     and tactics
    Military tactics
    Military tactics, the science and art of organizing an army or an air force, are the techniques for using weapons or military units in combination for engaging and defeating an enemy in battle. Changes in philosophy and technology over time have been reflected in changes to military tactics. In...

     confidential and away from the enemy. This is used to counter espionage
    Espionage
    Espionage or spying involves an individual obtaining information that is considered secret or confidential without the permission of the holder of the information. Espionage is inherently clandestine, lest the legitimate holder of the information change plans or take other countermeasures once it...

    , which is the process of gleaning military information.
  • Political censorship
    Political censorship
    Political censorship exists when a government attempts to conceal, distort, or falsify information that its citizens receive by suppressing or crowding out political news that the public might receive through news outlets. In the absence of unflattering but objective information, people will be...

     occurs when governments hold back information from their citizens. This is often done to exert control over the populace and prevent free expression that might foment rebellion
    Rebellion
    Rebellion, uprising or insurrection, is a refusal of obedience or order. It may, therefore, be seen as encompassing a range of behaviors aimed at destroying or replacing an established authority such as a government or a head of state...

    .
  • Religious censorship
    Censorship by religion
    Censorship by religion is a form of censorship where freedom of expression is controlled or limited using religious authority or on the basis of the teachings of the religion. This form of censorship has a long history and is practiced in many societies and by many religions...

     is the means by which any material considered objectionable by a certain faith is removed. This often involves a dominant religion forcing limitations on less prevalent ones. Alternatively, one religion may shun the works of another when they believe the content is not appropriate for their faith.
  • Corporate censorship
    Corporate censorship
    Corporate censorship is censorship by corporations, the sanctioning of speech by spokespersons, employees, and business associates by threat of monetary loss, loss of employment, or loss of access to the marketplace.- TV Guide debate :...

     is the process by which editors in corporate media outlets intervene to disrupt the publishing of information that portrays their business or business partners in a negative light, or intervene to prevent alternate offers from reaching public exposure.

Political



Strict censorship existed in the Eastern Bloc. Throughout the bloc, the various ministries of culture held a tight rein on their writers. Cultural products there reflected the propaganda needs of the state. Party-approved censors exercised strict control in the early years. In the Stalinist period, even the weather forecasts were changed if they had the temerity to suggest that the sun might not shine on May Day
May Day
May Day on May 1 is an ancient northern hemisphere spring festival and usually a public holiday; it is also a traditional spring holiday in many cultures....

. Under Nicolae Ceauşescu
Nicolae Ceausescu
Nicolae Ceaușescu was a Romanian Communist politician. He was General Secretary of the Romanian Communist Party from 1965 to 1989, and as such was the country's second and last Communist leader...

 in Romania, weather reports were doctored so that the temperatures were not seen to rise above or fall below the levels which dictated that work must stop.

Independent journalism did not exist in the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 until Mikhail Gorbachev
Mikhail Gorbachev
Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachev is a former Soviet statesman, having served as General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union from 1985 until 1991, and as the last head of state of the USSR, having served from 1988 until its dissolution in 1991...

 became its leader; all reporting was directed by the Communist Party
Communist party
A political party described as a Communist party includes those that advocate the application of the social principles of communism through a communist form of government...

 or related organizations. Pravda
Pravda
Pravda was a leading newspaper of the Soviet Union and an official organ of the Central Committee of the Communist Party between 1912 and 1991....

, the predominant newspaper in the Soviet Union, had a monopoly. Foreign newspapers were available only if they were published by Communist Parties sympathetic to the Soviet Union.

Possession and use of copying machines was tightly controlled in order to hinder production and distribution of samizdat
Samizdat
Samizdat was a key form of dissident activity across the Soviet bloc in which individuals reproduced censored publications by hand and passed the documents from reader to reader...

, illegal self-published
Self-publishing
Self-publishing is the publication of any book or other media by the author of the work, without the involvement of an established third-party publisher. The author is responsible and in control of entire process including design , formats, price, distribution, marketing & PR...

 books and magazines. Possession of even a single samizdat manuscript such as a book by Andrei Sinyavsky
Andrei Sinyavsky
Andrei Donatovich Sinyavsky was a Russian writer, dissident, political prisoner, emigrant, Professor of Sorbonne University, magazine founder and publisher...

 was a serious crime which might involve a visit from the KGB
KGB
The KGB was the commonly used acronym for the . It was the national security agency of the Soviet Union from 1954 until 1991, and was the premier internal security, intelligence, and secret police organization during that time.The State Security Agency of the Republic of Belarus currently uses the...

. Another outlet for works which did not find favor with the authorities was publishing abroad.

The People's Republic of China
Censorship in the People's Republic of China
Censorship in the People's Republic of China is implemented or mandated by the PRC's ruling party, the Communist Party of China . The special administrative regions of Hong Kong and Macau have their own legal systems and are largely self-governing, so these censorship policies do not apply...

, which continues Communist rule in politics, if not in the controlled economy, employs some 30,000 'Internet police' to monitor the internet and popular search engines such as Google
Google
Google Inc. is an American multinational public corporation invested in Internet search, cloud computing, and advertising technologies. Google hosts and develops a number of Internet-based services and products, and generates profit primarily from advertising through its AdWords program...

 and Yahoo
Yahoo!
Yahoo! Inc. is an American multinational internet corporation headquartered in Sunnyvale, California, United States. The company is perhaps best known for its web portal, search engine , Yahoo! Directory, Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! News, Yahoo! Groups, Yahoo! Answers, advertising, online mapping ,...

.

Iraq under Baathist Saddam Hussein
Saddam Hussein
Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti was the fifth President of Iraq, serving in this capacity from 16 July 1979 until 9 April 2003...

 had much the same techniques of press censorship as did Romania under Nicolae Ceauşescu
Nicolae Ceausescu
Nicolae Ceaușescu was a Romanian Communist politician. He was General Secretary of the Romanian Communist Party from 1965 to 1989, and as such was the country's second and last Communist leader...

 but with greater potential violence.

Cuban media is operated under the supervision of the Communist Party's
Communist Party of Cuba
The Communist Party of Cuba is the governing political party in Cuba. It is a communist party of the Marxist-Leninist model. The Cuban constitution ascribes the role of the Party to be the "leading force of society and of the state"...

 Department of Revolutionary Orientation, which "develops and coordinates propaganda strategies". Connection to the Internet is restricted and censored.

Censorship also takes place in capitalist nations, such as Uruguay. In 1973, a military coup took power in Uruguay, and the State practiced censorship. For example, writer Eduardo Galeano
Eduardo Galeano
Eduardo Hughes Galeano is a Uruguayan journalist, writer and novelist. His best known works are Memoria del fuego and Las venas abiertas de América Latina which have been translated into twenty languages and transcend orthodox genres: combining fiction, journalism, political analysis, and...

 was imprisoned and later was forced to flee. His book Open Veins of Latin America
Open Veins of Latin America
Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent is a book written by Uruguayan journalist, writer and poet Eduardo Galeano, and published in 1971.- Summary :...

 was banned by the right-wing military government, not only in Uruguay, but also in Chile and Argentina.

Critics of the Campaign finance reform
Campaign finance reform
Campaign finance reform is the common term for the political effort in the United States to change the involvement of money in politics, primarily in political campaigns....

 in the United States claim that this reform imposes widespread restrictions on political speech.

State secrets and prevention of attention



In wartime, explicit censorship is carried out with the intent of preventing the release of information that might be useful to an enemy. Typically it involves keeping times or locations secret, or delaying the release of information (e.g., an operational objective) until it is of no possible use to enemy forces. The moral issues here are often seen as somewhat different, as the proponents of this form of censorship argues that release of tactical information usually presents a greater risk of casualties among one's own forces and could possibly lead to loss of the overall conflict.

During World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

 letters written by British soldiers would have to go through censorship. This consisted of officers going through letters with a black marker and crossing out anything which might compromise operational secrecy before the letter was sent. The World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

 catchphrase "Loose lips sink ships
British propaganda during World War II
British propaganda during World War II took various forms. Using a wide variety of media, it called for actions needed for the war, such as production and proper behavior in the blackout, painted a dark picture of the Axis powers, and praised the Allies....

" was used as a common justification to exercise official wartime censorship and encourage individual restraint when sharing potentially sensitive information.

An example of "sanitization
Sanitization (classified information)
Sanitization is the process of removing sensitive information from a document or other medium, so that it may be distributed to a broader audience. When dealing with classified information, sanitization attempts to reduce the document's classification level, possibly yielding an unclassified...

" policies comes from the USSR
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 under Joseph Stalin
Joseph Stalin
Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin was the Premier of the Soviet Union from 6 May 1941 to 5 March 1953. He was among the Bolshevik revolutionaries who brought about the October Revolution and had held the position of first General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union's Central Committee...

, where publicly used photographs were often altered to remove people whom Stalin had condemned to execution. Though past photographs may have been remembered or kept, this deliberate and systematic alteration to all of history in the public mind is seen as one of the central themes of Stalinism
Stalinism
Stalinism refers to the ideology that Joseph Stalin conceived and implemented in the Soviet Union, and is generally considered a branch of Marxist–Leninist ideology but considered by some historians to be a significant deviation from this philosophy...

 and totalitarianism
Totalitarianism
Totalitarianism is a political system where the state recognizes no limits to its authority and strives to regulate every aspect of public and private life wherever feasible...

.

Censorship is occasionally carried out to aid authorities or to protect an individual, as with some kidnappings when attention and media coverage of the victim can sometimes be seen as unhelpful.

Educational sources


. The offending cover was about the subject of love
Love
Love is an emotion of strong affection and personal attachment. In philosophical context, love is a virtue representing all of human kindness, compassion, and affection. Love is central to many religions, as in the Christian phrase, "God is love" or Agape in the Canonical gospels...

, and the picture hidden beneath the white sticker is of an embracing couple. February 2006.]]
The content of school textbooks is often the issue of debate, since their target audience is young people, and the term "whitewashing" is the one commonly used to refer to removal of critical or conflicting events. The reporting of military atrocities in history
Historical revisionism (negationism)
Historical revisionism is either the legitimate scholastic re-examination of existing knowledge about a historical event, or the illegitimate distortion of the historical record such that certain events appear in a more or less favourable light. For the former, i.e. the academic pursuit, see...

 is extremely controversial, as in the case of The Holocaust
The Holocaust
The Holocaust , also known as the Shoah , was the genocide of approximately six million European Jews and millions of others during World War II, a programme of systematic state-sponsored murder by Nazi...

 (or Holocaust denial
Holocaust denial
Holocaust denial is the act of denying the genocide of Jews in World War II, usually referred to as the Holocaust. The key claims of Holocaust denial are: the German Nazi government had no official policy or intention of exterminating Jews, Nazi authorities did not use extermination camps and gas...

), Bombing of Dresden, the Nanking Massacre
Nanking Massacre
The Nanking Massacre or Nanjing Massacre, also known as the Rape of Nanking, was a mass murder, genocide and war rape that occurred during the six-week period following the Japanese capture of the city of Nanjing , the former capital of the Republic of China, on December 13, 1937 during the Second...

 as found with Japanese history textbook controversies
Japanese history textbook controversies
Japanese history textbook controversies refers to controversial content in government-approved history textbooks used in the secondary education of Japan...

, the Armenian Genocide
Armenian Genocide
The Armenian Genocide—also known as the Armenian Holocaust, the Armenian Massacres and, by Armenians, as the Great Crime—refers to the deliberate and systematic destruction of the Armenian population of the Ottoman Empire during and just after World War I...

, the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989
Tiananmen Square protests of 1989
The Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, also known as the June Fourth Incident in Chinese , were a series of demonstrations in and near Tiananmen Square in Beijing in the People's Republic of China beginning on 15 April 1989...

, and the Winter Soldier Investigation
Winter Soldier Investigation
The "Winter Soldier Investigation" was a media event sponsored by the Vietnam Veterans Against the War from January 31, 1971 – February 2, 1971. It was intended to publicize war crimes and atrocities by the United States Armed Forces and their allies in the Vietnam War...

 of the Vietnam War
Vietnam War
The Vietnam War was a Cold War-era military conflict that occurred in Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia from 1 November 1955 to the fall of Saigon on 30 April 1975. This war followed the First Indochina War and was fought between North Vietnam, supported by its communist allies, and the government of...

.

In the context of secondary school
Secondary school
Secondary school is a term used to describe an educational institution where the final stage of schooling, known as secondary education and usually compulsory up to a specified age, takes place...

 education, the way facts and history
History
History is the discovery, collection, organization, and presentation of information about past events. History can also mean the period of time after writing was invented. Scholars who write about history are called historians...

 are presented greatly influences the interpretation of contemporary thought, opinion and socialization. One argument for censoring the type of information disseminated is based on the inappropriate quality of such material for the young. The use of the "inappropriate" distinction is in itself controversial, as it changed heavily. A Ballantine Books version of the book Fahrenheit 451
Fahrenheit 451
Fahrenheit 451 is a 1953 dystopian novel by Ray Bradbury. The novel presents a future American society where reading is outlawed and firemen start fires to burn books...

 which is the version used by most school classes contained approximately 75 separate edits, omissions, and changes from the original Bradbury manuscript.

Music and popular culture



Music censorship has been implemented by states, religions, educational systems, families, retailers and lobbying groups – and in most cases they violate international conventions of human rights.

Aside from the usual justifications of pornography, language and violence, some movies are censored due to changing racial attitudes or political correctness
Political correctness
Political correctness is a term which denotes language, ideas, policies, and behavior seen as seeking to minimize social and institutional offense in occupational, gender, racial, cultural, sexual orientation, certain other religions, beliefs or ideologies, disability, and age-related contexts,...

 in order to avoid ethnic stereotyping
Ethnic stereotype
An ethnic stereotype is a generalized representation of an ethnic group, composed of what are thought to be typical characteristics of members of the group.Ethnic stereotypes are commonly portrayed in ethnic jokes.-Ethnic stereotypes:*African Americans...

 and/or ethnic offense despite its historical or artistic value. One example is the still withdrawn "Censored Eleven
Censored Eleven
The Censored Eleven is a group of Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies cartoons that were withheld from syndication by United Artists in 1968...

" series of animated cartoons, which may have been innocent then, but are "incorrect" now.

Copy, picture, and writer approval


Copy approval is the right to read and amend an article, usually an interview, before publication. Many publications refuse to give copy approval but it is increasingly becoming common practice when dealing with publicity anxious celebrities. Picture approval is the right given to an individual to choose which photos will be published and which will not. Robert Redford
Robert Redford
Charles Robert Redford, Jr. , better known as Robert Redford, is an American actor, film director, producer, businessman, environmentalist, philanthropist, and founder of the Sundance Film Festival. He has received two Oscars: one in 1981 for directing Ordinary People, and one for Lifetime...

 is well known for insisting upon picture approval. Writer approval is when writers are chosen based on whether they will write flattering articles or not. Hollywood publicist Pat Kingsley is known for banning certain writers who wrote undesirably about one of her clients from interviewing any of her other clients.

Maps


Censorship of maps is often employed for military purposes. For example, the technique was used in former East Germany, especially for the areas near the border to West Germany
West Germany
West Germany is the common English, but not official, name for the Federal Republic of Germany or FRG in the period between its creation in May 1949 to German reunification on 3 October 1990....

 in order to make attempts of defection
Defection
In politics, a defector is a person who gives up allegiance to one state or political entity in exchange for allegiance to another. More broadly, it involves abandoning a person, cause or doctrine to whom or to which one is bound by some tie, as of allegiance or duty.This term is also applied,...

 more difficult. Censorship of maps is also applied by Google maps
Google Maps
Google Maps is a web mapping service application and technology provided by Google, free , that powers many map-based services, including the Google Maps website, Google Ride Finder, Google Transit, and maps embedded on third-party websites via the Google Maps API...

, where certain areas are grayed out or areas are purposely left out-dated with old imagery.

Meta-censorship


In this form of censorship, any information about existence of censorship and the legal basis of the censorship is censored, rules of censoring are classified, and removed texts or phrases are not marked.

Creative censorship


There are many ways that censors exhibit creativity, but a specific variant is of concern in which censors rewrite texts, giving these texts secret co-authors. This form of censorship is used in the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four
Nineteen Eighty-Four
Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell is a dystopian novel about Oceania, a society ruled by the oligarchical dictatorship of the Party...

.

Internet censorship


Internet censorship is control or suppression of the publishing or accessing of information on the Internet
Internet
The Internet is a global system of interconnected computer networks that use the standard Internet protocol suite to serve billions of users worldwide...

. It may be carried out by governments or by private organizations either at the behest of government or on their own initiative. Individuals and organizations may engage in self-censorship
Self-censorship
Self-censorship is the act of censoring or classifying one's own work , out of fear of, or deference to, the sensibilities of others, without overt pressure from any specific party or institution of authority...

 on their own or due to intimidation and fear.

The issues associated with Internet censorship are similar to those for offline censorship of more traditional media. One difference is that national borders are more permeable online: residents of a country that bans certain information can find it on website
Website
A website, also written as Web site, web site, or simply site, is a collection of related web pages containing images, videos or other digital assets. A website is hosted on at least one web server, accessible via a network such as the Internet or a private local area network through an Internet...

s hosted outside the country. Thus censors must work to prevent access to information even though they lack physical or legal control over the websites themselves. This in turn requires the use of technical censorship methods that are unique to the Internet, such as site blocking and content filtering.

Unless the censor has total control over all Internet-connected computers, such as in North Korea or Cuba, total censorship of information is very difficult or impossible to achieve due to the underlying distributed technology of the Internet. Pseudonymity
Pseudonymity
Pseudonymity is a word derived from pseudonym, meaning 'false name', and anonymity, meaning unknown or undeclared source, describing a state of disguised identity. The pseudonym identifies a holder, that is, one or more human beings who possess but do not disclose their true names...

 and data haven
Data haven
A data haven, like a corporate haven or tax haven, is a refuge for uninterrupted or unregulated data. Data havens are locations with legal environments that are friendly to the concept of a computer network freely holding data and even protecting its content and associated information...

s (such as Freenet
Freenet
Freenet is a decentralized, censorship-resistant distributed data store originally designed by Ian Clarke. According to Clarke, Freenet aims to provide freedom of speech through a peer-to-peer network with strong protection of anonymity; as part of supporting its users' freedom, Freenet is free and...

) protect free speech using technologies that guarantee material cannot be removed and prevents the identification of authors. Technologically savvy users can often find ways to access blocked content
Internet censorship circumvention
Internet censorship circumvention is the process used by technologically savvy Internet users to bypass the technical aspects of Internet filtering and gain access to otherwise censored material....

. Never-the-less, blocking remains an effective means of limiting access to sensitive information for most users when censors, such as those in China
Internet censorship in the People's Republic of China
Internet censorship in the People's Republic of China is conducted under a wide variety of laws and administrative regulations. There are no specific laws or regulations which the censorship follows...

, are able to devote significant resources to building and maintaining a comprehensive censorship system.

Views about the feasibility and effectiveness of Internet censorship have evolved in parallel with the development of the Internet and censorship technologies:
  • A 1993 Time Magazine article quotes computer scientist John Gillmore, one of the founders of the Electronic Frontier Foundation
    Electronic Frontier Foundation
    The Electronic Frontier Foundation is an international non-profit digital rights advocacy and legal organization based in the United States...

    , as saying "The Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around it."
  • In November 2007, "Father of the Internet" Vint Cerf
    Vint Cerf
    Vinton Gray "Vint" Cerf is an American computer scientist, who is recognized as one of "the fathers of the Internet", sharing this title with American computer scientist Bob Kahn...

     stated that he sees government control of the Internet failing because the Web is almost entirely privately owned.
  • A report of research conducted in 2007 and published in 2009 by the Beckman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University stated that: "We are confident that the [censorship circumvention] tool developers will for the most part keep ahead of the governments' blocking efforts", but also that "...we believe that less than two percent of all filtered Internet users use circumvention tools".
  • In contrast, a 2011 report by researchers at the Oxford Internet Institute
    Oxford Internet Institute
    The Oxford Internet Institute is a multi-disciplinary institute based at the University of Oxford, England, and housed in buildings owned by Balliol College, Oxford. It is devoted to the study of the societal implications of the Internet, with the aim of shaping research, policy and practice in...

     published by UNESCO
    UNESCO
    The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

     concludes "... the control of information on the Internet and Web is certainly feasible, and technological advances do not therefore guarantee greater freedom of speech."


A BBC World Service poll of 27,973 adults in 26 countries, including 14,306 Internet users, was conducted between 30 November 2009 and 7 February 2010. The head of the polling organization felt, overall, that the poll showed that:
Despite worries about privacy and fraud, people around the world see access to the internet as their fundamental right. They think the web is a force for good, and most don’t want governments to regulate it.

The poll found that nearly four in five (78%) Internet users felt that the Internet had brought them greater freedom, that most Internet users (53%) felt that "the internet should never be regulated by any level of government anywhere", and almost four in five Internet users and non-users around the world felt that access to the Internet was a fundamental right (50% strongly agreed, 29% somewhat agreed, 9% somewhat disagreed, 6% strongly disagreed, and 6% gave no opinion).

Implementation



The former Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 maintained a particularly extensive program of state-imposed censorship. The main organ for official censorship in the Soviet Union
Soviet Union
The Soviet Union , officially the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics , was a constitutionally socialist state that existed in Eurasia between 1922 and 1991....

 was the Chief Agency for Protection of Military and State Secrets generally known as the Glavlit
Main Administration for Safeguarding State Secrets in the Press
General Directorate for the Protection of State Secrets in the Press under the Council of Ministers of the USSR was the official censorship and state secret protection organ in the Soviet Union. The censorship agency was established in 1922 under the name "Main Administration for Literary and...

, its Russian acronym. The Glavlit handled censorship matters arising from domestic writings of just about any kind—even beer and vodka labels. Glavlit censorship personnel were present in every large Soviet publishing house or newspaper; the agency employed some 70,000 censors to review information before it was disseminated by publishing houses, editorial offices, and broadcasting studios. No mass medium escaped Glavlits control. All press agencies and radio and television stations had Glavlit representatives on their editorial staffs.

Sometimes, a specific and unique
Uniqueness quantification
In mathematics and logic, the phrase "there is one and only one" is used to indicate that exactly one object with a certain property exists. In mathematical logic, this sort of quantification is known as uniqueness quantification or unique existential quantification.Uniqueness quantification is...

 information whose very existence is barely known to the public, is kept in a subtle, near-censorship situation, being regarded as "subversive
Subversion (politics)
Subversion refers to an attempt to transform the established social order, its structures of power, authority, and hierarchy; examples of such structures include the State. In this context, a "subversive" is sometimes called a "traitor" with respect to the government in-power. A subversive is...

" or "inconvenient". Michel Foucault
Michel Foucault
Michel Foucault , born Paul-Michel Foucault , was a French philosopher, social theorist and historian of ideas...

's 1978 text "Sexual Morality and the Law
Sexual Morality and the Law
Sexual Morality and the Law is the transcription of a 1978 radio conversation in Paris between philosopher Michel Foucault, playwright/actor/lawyer Jean Danet, and novelist/gay activist Guy Hocquenghem, debating the idea of abolishing age of consent laws in France.In 1977, the issue was brought to...

" (later republished as "The Danger of Child Sexuality"), for instance - originally published as La loi de la pudeur [literally, "the law of decency"], defends the decriminalization of statutory rape
Statutory rape
The phrase statutory rape is a term used in some legal jurisdictions to describe sexual activities where one participant is below the age required to legally consent to the behavior...

 and the abolition of age of consent laws
Age of consent reform
Age of consent reform refers to efforts to change age of consent laws, whether to raise or lower or abolish the age of consent, or to change the ways in which the laws are applied. Another issue has been homosexual vs...

.

When a publisher comes under pressure to suppress a book, but has already entered into a contract with the author, they will sometimes effectively censor the book by deliberately ordering a small print run and making minimal, if any, attempts to publicize it. This practice became known in the early 2000s as privishing.

Censorship by country



Censorship by country collects information on censorship, Internet censorship
Internet censorship
Internet censorship is the control or suppression of the publishing of, or access to information on the Internet. It may be carried out by governments or by private organizations either at the behest of government or on their own initiative...

, Freedom of the Press
Freedom of the press
Freedom of the press or freedom of the media is the freedom of communication and expression through vehicles including various electronic media and published materials...

, Freedom of speech
Freedom of speech
Freedom of speech is the freedom to speak freely without censorship. The term freedom of expression is sometimes used synonymously, but includes any act of seeking, receiving and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used...

, and Human Rights
Human rights
Human rights are "commonly understood as inalienable fundamental rights to which a person is inherently entitled simply because she or he is a human being." Human rights are thus conceived as universal and egalitarian . These rights may exist as natural rights or as legal rights, in both national...

 by country and presents it in a sortable table, together with links to articles with more information. In addition to countries, the table includes information on former countries, disputed countries, political sub-units within countries, and regional organizations.

See also




Related articles
  • Book banning
  • Book burning
    Book burning
    Book burning, biblioclasm or libricide is the practice of destroying, often ceremoniously, books or other written material and media. In modern times, other forms of media, such as phonograph records, video tapes, and CDs have also been ceremoniously burned, torched, or shredded...

  • Chilling Effect
  • Federal Communications Commission
    Federal Communications Commission
    The Federal Communications Commission is an independent agency of the United States government, created, Congressional statute , and with the majority of its commissioners appointed by the current President. The FCC works towards six goals in the areas of broadband, competition, the spectrum, the...

  • Human rights
    Human rights
    Human rights are "commonly understood as inalienable fundamental rights to which a person is inherently entitled simply because she or he is a human being." Human rights are thus conceived as universal and egalitarian . These rights may exist as natural rights or as legal rights, in both national...

  • Laws against Holocaust denial
    Laws against Holocaust denial
    Holocaust denial is illegal in a number of European countries. Many countries also have broader laws that criminalize genocide denial. In addition, the European Union has issued a directive to combat racism and xenophobia, which makes provision for member states criminalising Holocaust denial, with...


  • Market for loyalties theory
    Market for loyalties theory
    Market for Loyalties Theory is a media theory based upon neoclassical economics. It describes why governments and power-holders monopolize radio, satellite, internet and other media through censorship using regulations, technology and other controls...

  • Newspeak
    Newspeak
    Newspeak is a fictional language in George Orwell's novel Nineteen Eighty-Four. In the novel, it refers to the deliberately impoverished language promoted by the state. Orwell included an essay about it in the form of an appendix in which the basic principles of the language are explained...

  • Self-censorship
    Self-censorship
    Self-censorship is the act of censoring or classifying one's own work , out of fear of, or deference to, the sensibilities of others, without overt pressure from any specific party or institution of authority...

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    Strategic lawsuit against public participation
    A strategic lawsuit against public participation is a lawsuit that is intended to censor, intimidate, and silence critics by burdening them with the cost of a legal defense until they abandon their criticism or opposition....

  • Taboo
    Taboo
    A taboo is a strong social prohibition relating to any area of human activity or social custom that is sacred and or forbidden based on moral judgment, religious beliefs and or scientific consensus. Breaking the taboo is usually considered objectionable or abhorrent by society...

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Freedoms
  • Academic freedom
    Academic freedom
    Academic freedom is the belief that the freedom of inquiry by students and faculty members is essential to the mission of the academy, and that scholars should have freedom to teach or communicate ideas or facts without being targeted for repression, job loss, or imprisonment.Academic freedom is a...

  • Freedom of the press
    Freedom of the press
    Freedom of the press or freedom of the media is the freedom of communication and expression through vehicles including various electronic media and published materials...

  • Freedom of speech
    Freedom of speech
    Freedom of speech is the freedom to speak freely without censorship. The term freedom of expression is sometimes used synonymously, but includes any act of seeking, receiving and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used...

  • Freedom of thought
    Freedom of thought
    Freedom of thought is the freedom of an individual to hold or consider a fact, viewpoint, or thought, independent of others' viewpoints....

  • Scientific freedom
    Scientific freedom
    Scientific freedom is the idea of freedom applied to natural science, in particular the practices of scientific research and discourse, mainly by publication...



General information



  • Abbott, Randy. "A Critical Analysis of the Library-Related Literature Concerning Censorship in Public Libraries and Public School Libraries in the United States During the 1980s." Project for degree of Education Specialist, University of South Florida
    University of South Florida
    The University of South Florida, also known as USF, is a member institution of the State University System of Florida, one of the state's three flagship universities for public research, and is located in Tampa, Florida, USA...

    , December 1987. ED 308 864
  • Burress, Lee. Battle of the Books. Metuchen, NJ: The Scarecrow Press, 1989. ED 308 508
  • Butler, Judith
    Judith Butler
    Judith Butler is an American post-structuralist philosopher, who has contributed to the fields of feminism, queer theory, political philosophy, and ethics. She is a professor in the Rhetoric and Comparative Literature departments at the University of California, Berkeley.Butler received her Ph.D...

    , "Excitable Speech: A Politics of the Performative"(1997)
  • Foucault, Michel
    Michel Foucault
    Michel Foucault , born Paul-Michel Foucault , was a French philosopher, social theorist and historian of ideas...

    , edited by Lawrence D. Kritzman. Philosophy, Culture: interviews and other writings 1977–1984 (New York/London: 1988, Routledge, ISBN 0-415-90082-4) (The text Sexual Morality and the Law is Chapter 16 of the book).
  • O'Reilly, Robert C. & Parker, Larry. "Censorship or Curriculum Modification?" Paper presented at a School Boards Association, 1982, 14 p. ED 226 432
  • Hendrikson, Leslie. "Library Censorship: ERIC Digest No. 23." ERIC Clearinghouse for Social Studies/Social Science Education, Boulder, Colorado, November 1985. ED 264 165
  • Wittern-Keller, Laura. Freedom of the Screen: Legal Challenges to State Film Censorship, 1915-1981. University Press of Kentucky 2008 ISBN 987-0-8131-2451-3
  • Hoffman, Frank. "Intellectual Freedom and Censorship." Metuchen, NJ: The Scarecrow Press, 1989. ED 307 652
  • Marek, Kate. "Schoolbook Censorship USA." June 1987. ED 300 018
  • Mathiesen, Kay Censorship and Access to Information HANDBOOK OF INFORMATION AND COMPUTER ETHICS, Kenneth E. Himma, Herman T. Tavani, eds., John Wiley and Sons, New York, 2008
  • National Coalition against Censorship (NCAC). "Books on Trial: A Survey of Recent Cases." January 1985. ED 258 597
  • Ringmar, Erik A Blogger's Manifesto: Free Speech and Censorship in the Age of the Internet (London: Anthem Press, 2007)
  • Small, Robert C., Jr. "Preparing the New English Teacher to Deal with Censorship, or Will I Have to Face it Alone?" Annual Meeting of the National Council of Teachers of English, 1987, 16 p.
  • Supreme Court rejects advocates' plea to preserve useful formats
  • Terry, John David II. "Censorship: Post Pico." In "School Law Update, 1986," edited by Thomas N. Jones and Darel P. Semler. ED 272 994
  • World Book Encyclopedia
    World Book Encyclopedia
    The World Book Encyclopedia is an encyclopedia published in the United States. It is self-described as "the number-one selling print encyclopedia in the world." The encyclopedia is designed to cover major areas of knowledge uniformly, but it shows particular strength in scientific, technical, and...

    , volume 3 (C-Ch), pages 345, 346


External links