12345...102030...


Censorship – Wikipedia

The practice of suppressing information

Censorship is the suppression of speech, public communication, or other information, on the basis that such material is considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or “inconvenient”.[2][3][4] Censorship can be conducted by a government[5] private institutions, and corporations.

Governments[5] and private organizations may engage in censorship. Other groups or institutions may propose and petition for censorship.[6] When an individual such as an author or other creator engages in censorship of their own works or speech, it is referred to as self-censorship. It occurs in a variety of different media, including speech, books, music, films, and other arts, the press, radio, television, and the Internet for a variety of claimed reasons including national security, to control obscenity, child pornography, and hate speech, to protect children or other vulnerable groups, to promote or restrict political or religious views, and to prevent slander and libel.

Direct censorship may or may not be legal, depending on the type, location, and content. Many countries provide strong protections against censorship by law, but none of these protections are absolute and frequently a claim of necessity to balance conflicting rights is made, in order to determine what could and could not be censored. There are no laws against self-censorship.

In 399 BC, Greek philosopher, Socrates, defied attempts by the Greek state to censor his philosophical teachings and was sentenced to death by drinking a poison, hemlock. Socrates’ student, Plato, is said to have advocated censorship in his essay on The Republic, which opposed the existence of democracy. In contrast to Plato, Greek playwright Euripides (480406BC) defended the true liberty of freeborn men, including the right to speak freely. In 1766, Sweden became the first country to abolish censorship by law.[9]

The rationale for censorship is different for various types of information censored:

Cuban media used to be operated under the supervision of the Communist Party’s Department of Revolutionary Orientation, which “develops and coordinates propaganda strategies”.[15] Connection to the Internet is restricted and censored.[16]

The People’s Republic of China employs sophisticated censorship mechanisms, referred to as the Golden Shield Project, to monitor the internet. Popular search engines such as Baidu also remove politically sensitive search results.[17][18][19]

Strict censorship existed in the Eastern Bloc.[20] Throughout the bloc, the various ministries of culture held a tight rein on their writers.[21] Cultural products there reflected the propaganda needs of the state.[21] Party-approved censors exercised strict control in the early years.[22] In the Stalinist period, even the weather forecasts were changed if they suggested that the sun might not shine on May Day.[22] Under Nicolae Ceauescu 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.[22]

Possession and use of copying machines was tightly controlled in order to hinder production and distribution of samizdat, illegal self-published books and magazines. Possession of even a single samizdat manuscript such as a book by Andrei Sinyavsky was a serious crime which might involve a visit from the KGB. Another outlet for works which did not find favor with the authorities was publishing abroad.

Iraq under Baathist Saddam Hussein had much the same techniques of press censorship as did Romania under Nicolae Ceauescu but with greater potential violence.[citation needed]

According to Christian Mihr, executive director of Reporters Without Borders, “censorship in Serbia is neither direct nor transparent, but is easy to prove.” [23] According to Mihr there are numerous examples of censorship and self-censorship in Serbia [24] According to Mihr, Serbian prime minister Aleksandar Vui has proved “very sensitive to criticism, even on critical questions,” as was the case with Natalija Miletic, correspondent for Deutsche Welle Radio, who questioned him in Berlin about the media situation in Serbia and about allegations that some ministers in the Serbian government had plagiarized their diplomas, and who later received threats and offensive articles on the Serbian press.[24]

Multiple news outlets have accused Vui of anti-democratic strongman tendencies.[25][26][27][28][29] In July 2014, journalists associations were concerned about the freedom of the media in Serbia, in which Vui came under criticism.[30][31]

In September 2015 five members of United States Congress (Edie Bernice Johnson, Carlos Curbelo, Scott Perry, Adam Kinzinger, and Zoe Lofgren) have informed Vice President of the United States Joseph Biden that Aleksandar’s brother, Andrej Vui, is leading a group responsible for deteriorating media freedom in Serbia.[32]

In the Republic of Singapore, Section 33 of the Films Act originally banned the making, distribution and exhibition of “party political films”, at pain of a fine not exceeding $100,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years. The Act further defines a “party political film” as any film or video

In 2001, the short documentary called A Vision of Persistence on opposition politician J. B. Jeyaretnam was also banned for being a “party political film”. The makers of the documentary, all lecturers at the Ngee Ann Polytechnic, later submitted written apologies and withdrew the documentary from being screened at the 2001 Singapore International Film Festival in April, having been told they could be charged in court. Another short documentary called Singapore Rebel by Martyn See, which documented Singapore Democratic Party leader Dr Chee Soon Juan’s acts of civil disobedience, was banned from the 2005 Singapore International Film Festival on the same grounds and See is being investigated for possible violations of the Films Act.

This law, however, is often disregarded when such political films are made supporting the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP). Channel NewsAsia’s five-part documentary series on Singapore’s PAP ministers in 2005, for example, was not considered a party political film.

Exceptions are also made when political films are made concerning political parties of other nations. Films such as Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 911 are thus allowed to screen regardless of the law.

Since March 2009, the Films Act has been amended to allow party political films as long as they were deemed factual and objective by a consultative committee. Some months later, this committee lifted the ban on Singapore Rebel.

Independent journalism did not exist in the Soviet Union until Mikhail Gorbachev became its leader; all reporting was directed by the Communist Party or related organizations. Pravda, 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.

Online access to all language versions of Wikipedia was blocked in Turkey on 29 April 2017 by Erdoan’s government.[33]

In the United States, censorship occurs through books, film festivals, politics, and public schools.[34] See banned books for more information. Additionally, critics of campaign finance reform in the United States say this reform imposes widespread restrictions on political speech.[35][36]

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 was imprisoned and later was forced to flee. His book Open Veins of Latin America was banned by the right-wing military government, not only in Uruguay, but also in Chile and Argentina.[37]

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 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.[38] The World War II catchphrase “Loose lips sink ships” was used as a common justification to exercise official wartime censorship and encourage individual restraint when sharing potentially sensitive information.

An example of “sanitization” policies comes from the USSR under Joseph Stalin, 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 and totalitarianism.

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.[39][40]

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. Examples include the Galileo affair, Edict of Compigne, the Index Librorum Prohibitorum (list of prohibited books) and the condemnation of Salman Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses by Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Images of the Islamic figure Muhammad are also regularly censored. In some secular countries, this is sometimes done to prevent hurting religious sentiments.[41]

The content of school textbooks is often an issue of debate, since their target audience is young people. The term whitewashing is commonly used to refer to revisionism aimed at glossing over difficult or questionable historical events, or a biased presentation thereof. The reporting of military atrocities in history is extremely controversial, as in the case of The Holocaust (or Holocaust denial), Bombing of Dresden, the Nanking Massacre as found with Japanese history textbook controversies, the Armenian Genocide, the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, and the Winter Soldier Investigation of the Vietnam War.

In the context of secondary school education, the way facts and history 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 which is the version used by most school classes[42] contained approximately 75 separate edits, omissions, and changes from the original Bradbury manuscript.

In February 2006, a National Geographic cover was censored by the Nashravaran Journalistic Institute. The offending cover was about the subject of love and a picture of an embracing couple was hidden beneath a white sticker.[43][43]

Self-censorship is the act of censoring or classifying one’s own discourse. This is done out of fear of, or deference to, the sensibilities or preferences (actual or perceived) of others and without overt pressure from any specific party or institution of authority. Self-censorship is often practiced by film producers, film directors, publishers, news anchors, journalists, musicians, and other kinds of authors including individuals who use social media.[45]

According to a Pew Research Center and the Columbia Journalism Review survey, “About one-quarter of the local and national journalists say they have purposely avoided newsworthy stories, while nearly as many acknowledge they have softened the tone of stories to benefit the interests of their news organizations. Fully four-in-ten (41%) admit they have engaged in either or both of these practices.”[46]

Threats to media freedom have shown a significant increase in Europe in recent years, according to a study published in April 2017 by the Council of Europe.This results in a fear of physical or psychological violence, and the ultimate result is self-censorship by journalists.[47]

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.[48] Picture approval is the right given to an individual to choose which photos will be published and which will not. Robert Redford is well known for insisting upon picture approval.[49] 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.[citation needed]

Book censorship can be enacted at the national or sub-national level, and can carry legal penalties for their infraction. Books may also be challenged at a local, community level. As a result, books can be removed from schools or libraries, although these bans do not extend outside of that area.

Aside from the usual justifications of pornography and obscenity, some films are censored due to changing racial attitudes or political correctness in order to avoid ethnic stereotyping and/or ethnic offense despite its historical or artistic value. One example is the still withdrawn “Censored Eleven” series of animated cartoons, which may have been innocent then, but are “incorrect” now.

Film censorship is carried out by various countries to differing degrees. For example, only 34 foreign films a year are approved for official distribution in China’s strictly controlled film market.[50]

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.[51]

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 in order to make attempts of defection more difficult. Censorship of maps is also applied by Google Maps, where certain areas are grayed out or blacked or areas are purposely left outdated with old imagery.[52]

Under subsection 48(3) and (4) of the Penang Islamic Religious Administration Enactment 2004, non-Muslims in Malaysia are penalized for using the following words, or to write or publish them, in any form, version or translation in any language or for use in any publicity material in any medium:”Allah”, “Firman Allah”, “Ulama”, “Hadith”, “Ibadah”, “Kaabah”, “Qadhi'”, “Illahi”, “Wahyu”, “Mubaligh”, “Syariah”, “Qiblat”, “Haji”, “Mufti”, “Rasul”, “Iman”, “Dakwah”, “Wali”, “Fatwa”, “Imam”, “Nabi”, “Sheikh”, “Khutbah”, “Tabligh”, “Akhirat”, “Azan”, “Al Quran”, “As Sunnah”, “Auliya'”, “Karamah”, “False Moon God”, “Syahadah”, “Baitullah”, “Musolla”, “Zakat Fitrah”, “Hajjah”, “Taqwa” and “Soleh”.[53][54][55]

Publishers of the Spanish reference dictionary Real Acdemia Espaola received petitions to censor the entries “Jewishness”, “Gypsiness”, “black work” and “weak sex”, claiming that they are either offensive or non-PC.[56]

One elementary school’s obscenity filter changed every reference to the word “tit” to “breast,” so when a child typed “U.S. Constitution” into the school computer, it changed it to Consbreastution.[57]

Art is loved and feared because its evocative power. Destroying or oppressing art can potentially justify its meaning even more.[58]

British photographer and visual artist Graham Ovenden’s photos and paintings were ordered to be destroyed by a London’s magistrate court in 2015 for being “indecent”[59] and their copies had been removed from the online Tate gallery.[60]

A 1980 Israeli law forbade banned artwork composed of the four colours of the Palestinian flag,[61] and Palestinians were arrested for displaying such artwork or even for carrying sliced melons with the same pattern.[62][63][64]

Moath al-Alwi is a Guantanamo Bay Prisoner who creates model ships as an expression of art. Alwi does so with the few tools he has at his disposal such as floss and shampoo bottles, and he is also allowed to use a small pair of scissors with rounded edges. A few of Alwis pieces are on display at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York. There are also other artworks on display at the College that were created by other inmates. The artwork that is being displayed might be the only way for some of the inmates to communicate with the outside. Recently things have changed though. The military has come up with a new policy that wont allow the artwork at Guantanamo Bay Military Prison to leave the prison. The art work created by Alwi and other prisoners is now government property and can be destroyed by them or disposed in whatever way they choose, making it no longer the artists property. [65]

Around 300 artists in Cuba are fighting for their artistic freedom due to new censorship rules Cubas government has in place for artists. Recently, Tania Bruguera, a musician was detained upon arriving to Havana and released after four days because of these new censorships restrains Cuba has on artists there.[66]

An example of extreme state censorship was the Nazis requirements of using art as propaganda. Art was only allowed to be used as a political instrument to control people and failure to act in accordance with the censors was punishable by law, even fatal. The Degenerate Art Exhibition is a historical instance thats goal was to advertise Nazi values and slander others. [67]

Internet censorship is control or suppression of the publishing or accessing of 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. Individuals and organizations may engage in self-censorship 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 websites 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.[73]

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 and data havens (such as Freenet) 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. Nevertheless, blocking remains an effective means of limiting access to sensitive information for most users when censors, such as those in China, are able to devote significant resources to building and maintaining a comprehensive censorship system.[73]

Views about the feasibility and effectiveness of Internet censorship have evolved in parallel with the development of the Internet and censorship technologies:

A BBC World Service poll of 27,973 adults in 26 countries, including 14,306 Internet users,[77] was conducted between 30 November 2009 and 7 February 2010. The head of the polling organization felt, overall, that the poll showed that:

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).[79]

The rising usages of social media in many nations has led to the emergence of citizens organizing protests through social media, sometimes called “Twitter Revolutions”. The most notable of these social media led protests were parts Arab Spring uprisings, starting in 2010. In response to the use of social media in these protests, the Tunisian government began a hack of Tunisian citizens’ Facebook accounts, and reports arose of accounts being deleted.[80]

Automated systems can be used to censor social media posts, and therefore limit what citizens can say online. This most notably occurs in China, where social media posts are automatically censored depending on content. In 2013, Harvard political science professor Gary King led a study to determine what caused social media posts to be censored and found that posts mentioning the government were not more or less likely to be deleted if they were supportive or critical of the government. Posts mentioning collective action were more likely to be deleted than those that had not mentioned collective action.[81] Currently, social media censorship appears primarily as a way to restrict Internet users’ ability to organize protests. For the Chinese government, seeing citizens unhappy with local governance is beneficial as state and national leaders can replace unpopular officials. King and his researchers were able to predict when certain officials would be removed based on the number of unfavorable social media posts.[82]

Research has proved that criticism is tolerable on social media sites, therefore it is not censored unless it has a higher chance of collective action. It isn’t important whether the criticism is supportive or unsupportive of the states’ leaders, the main priority of censoring certain social media posts is to make sure that no big actions are being made due to something that was said on the internet. Posts that challenge the Party’s political leading role in the Chinese government are more likely to be censored due to the challenges it poses to the Chinese Communist Party.[83]

Since the early 1980s, advocates of video games have emphasized their use as an expressive medium, arguing for their protection under the laws governing freedom of speech and also as an educational tool. Detractors argue that video games are harmful and therefore should be subject to legislative oversight and restrictions. Many video games have certain elements removed or edited due to regional rating standards.[84][85]For example, in the Japanese and PAL Versions of No More Heroes, blood splatter and gore is removed from the gameplay. Decapitation scenes are implied, but not shown. Scenes of missing body parts after having been cut off, are replaced with the same scene, but showing the body parts fully intact.[86]

Surveillance and censorship are different. Surveillance can be performed without censorship, but it is harder to engage in censorship without some form of surveillance.[87] And even when surveillance does not lead directly to censorship, the widespread knowledge or belief that a person, their computer, or their use of the Internet is under surveillance can lead to self-censorship.[88]

Protection of sources is no longer just a matter of journalistic ethics; it increasingly also depends on the journalist’s computer skills and all journalists should equip themselves with a “digital survival kit” if they are exchanging sensitive information online or storing it on a computer or mobile phone.[89][90] And individuals associated with high-profile rights organizations, dissident, protest, or reform groups are urged to take extra precautions to protect their online identities.[91]

The former Soviet Union maintained a particularly extensive program of state-imposed censorship. The main organ for official censorship in the Soviet Union was the Chief Agency for Protection of Military and State Secrets generally known as the Glavlit, its Russian acronym. The Glavlit handled censorship matters arising from domestic writings of just about any kindeven 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 Glavlit’s control. All press agencies and radio and television stations had Glavlit representatives on their editorial staffs.[citation needed]

Sometimes, public knowledge of the existence of a specific document is subtly suppressed, a situation resembling censorship. The authorities taking such action will justify it by declaring the work to be “subversive” or “inconvenient”. An example is Michel Foucault’s 1978 text Sexual Morality and the Law (later republished as The Danger of Child Sexuality), originally published as La loi de la pudeur [literally, “the law of decency”]. This work defends the decriminalization of statutory rape and the abolition of age of consent laws.[citation needed]

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 (private publishing).[92]

Censorship has been criticized throughout history for being unfair and hindering progress. In a 1997 essay on Internet censorship, social commentator Michael Landier claims that censorship is counterproductive as it prevents the censored topic from being discussed. Landier expands his argument by claiming that those who impose censorship must consider what they censor to be true, as individuals believing themselves to be correct would welcome the opportunity to disprove those with opposing views.[93]

Censorship is often used to impose moral values on society, as in the censorship of material considered obscene. English novelist E. M. Forster was a staunch opponent of censoring material on the grounds that it was obscene or immoral, raising the issue of moral subjectivity and the constant changing of moral values. When the novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover was put on trial in 1960, Forster wrote:[94]

Lady Chatterley’s Lover is a literary work of importance…I do not think that it could be held obscene, but am in a difficulty here, for the reason that I have never been able to follow the legal definition of obscenity. The law tells me that obscenity may deprave and corrupt, but as far as I know, it offers no definition of depravity or corruption.

Censorship by country collects information on censorship, internet censorship, press freedom, freedom of speech, and human rights 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.

Related articles

Freedoms

Articles related to censorship

Read this article:

Censorship – Wikipedia

Censorship | Definition of Censorship by Merriam-Webster

1a : the institution, system, or practice of censoring They oppose government censorship. b : the actions or practices of censors especially : censorial control exercised repressively censorship that has permitted a very limited dispersion of facts Philip Wylie 2 : the office, power, or term of a Roman censor 3 : exclusion from consciousness by the psychic censor

Excerpt from:

Censorship | Definition of Censorship by Merriam-Webster

censorship | Definition of censorship in English by Oxford …

nounmass noun

1The suppression or prohibition of any parts of books, films, news, etc. that are considered obscene, politically unacceptable, or a threat to security.

the regulation imposes censorship on all media

as modifier we have strict censorship laws

2count noun (in ancient Rome) the office or position of censor.

he celebrated a triumph together with his father and they held the censorship jointly

Link:

censorship | Definition of censorship in English by Oxford …

Government censorship | Article about Government …

the control exercised by official authorities, whether secular or ecclesiastical, over the contents, publication, and circulation of printed matter, over the performance of plays and other stage works, and over fine arts and photographic exhibits, motion pictures, radio and television broadcasts, and sometimes even private correspondence for the purpose of preventing or limiting the dissemination of ideas and information deemed by such authorities to be undesirable or harmful.

Censorship may be imposed either before or after release of a given work. In the case of prior censorship, permission must be obtained before a book can be published, for example, or a play produced, whereas ex post facto censorship is exercised through the review of works that have already been published or otherwise released and through the restriction or prohibition of any work that violates the rules of censorship.

During the Middle Ages, censorship was exercised by the church authorities over theological and liturgical manuscripts in order to prevent heresies or other deviations from official church standards. The church issued book-banning decrees as well. In the 14th century, under Pope Urban VI, it was decreed that only those books could be used that were faithful copies of the originals and whose contents were not contrary to church dogma. In the early 15th century, Pope Martin V instituted a college of bishops that had control over the contents of books. Somewhat later, censorship functions were assumed by the secular state with respect to book copyists and the contents of books produced by them; such functions were usually exercised by the universities.

The invention of book printing stimulated the development of censorship. In 1471 it was decreed that books on religious subjects could be printed only with prior permission of the church authorities. In the mid-16th century the Catholic Church compiled a list of forbidden books; subsequently the list was repeatedly expanded. Beginning in the 16th century, censorship gradually passed into the hands of the secular authorities, becoming firmly established in all the Western European countries that had printing houses.

Under absolutist forms of government, censorship was one of the chief weapons used by the state and the church against ideologies that were hostile to the feudal system. Censorship bodies grew in number and were given greater responsibility over violations of the rules of censorship.

The French Revolution and the bourgeois revolutions elsewhere proclaimed freedom of expression and the abolition of censorship. The bourgeoisie itself, however, having gained political power, made extensive use of censorship for its own class purposes, thereby restricting the exercise of democratic freedoms by the proletariat and the workers progressive organizations. For a long time, workers publications in many countries were prohibited altogether.

Every bourgeois state today exercises ex post facto, or punitive, censorshipthat is, criminal proceedings are instituted in the case of publication of defamatory and slanderous information; punitive measures include fines, confiscation of printed issues, and bans or attachments against publication. The laws with respect to what may be published are so vague in formulation that they can be interpreted in a variety of ways. In the USA, for example, it is prohibited to abuse freedom of speech and freedom of the press; in Great Britain the government can prohibit the publication of certain news items on the grounds of national interest. According to Anglo-Saxon law, such censorship is not deemed contrary to freedom of speech and of the press.

The bourgeois states have no formal system of prior censorship; in many countries, howeverincluding the USA, France, and Great Britaina functioning system of governmental measures enables a stringent censorship to be effected in practice. In addition, opportunities to disseminate progressive publications are limited by the fact that new publishing organizations must be licensed and registered by the competent state agencies and must have large sums of money at their disposal in order to be able to operate. The very fact that the mass media, including newspapers and magazines, are owned by large monopolies determines the selection of material to be published and the weeding out of information that is unfavorable to the ruling class.

The censorship of motion pictures and school textbooks, which is systematically practiced in all the bourgeois states, is particularly stringent in the USA. In most of the bourgeois countries, the observance of censorship prohibitions is under the jurisdiction of the ministry or department of justice, the public prosecutors office, or the ministry of internal affairs.

REFERENCEIdeologicheskaia deiatelnost sovremennogo imperialisticheskogo gosudarstva. Moscow, 1972.In Russia. The earliest form of censorship in Russia, dating back to the 16th century, was religious censorship; its functions were assumed by the Synod in 1721. A decree of 1783, which allowed private individuals to establish printing houses, also introduced prior censorship: manuscripts could be printed only after being reviewed by the uprava blagochiniia (board of police). The outbreak of the French Revolution led to stricter censorship policies. In 1790, A. N. Radishchevs book A Journey From St. Petersburg to Moscow was destroyed; in 1792, N. I. Novikovs publishing house was closed down. A decree of 1796 instituted controls on the publication and importing of books into Russia and established censorship commissions in St. Petersburg, Moscow, and other cities.Censorship in the 19th century was regulated by special statutes. The first censorship statute, adopted in 1804, entrusted the supervision of publishing to the central board for school administration of the Ministry of Public Education. The statute prohibited the publication of works that were inimical to the Orthodox religion and to the autocratic order. A second statute, adopted in 1826 and known by its contemporaries as the iron statute, introduced a great number of petty restrictions that gave censors the right to ban any work at all. Under the statute of 1828, which was formally less restrictive, no new periodical could be published without permission of the emperor Nicholas I. The supervision of publishing was assumed by the central board for censorship under the Ministry of Public Education; local censorship commissions were subordinate to the central board. In practice the functions of censorship were exercised by the Third Section, to which censors had to report instances of freethinking works and their authors names. The works of A. S. Pushkin, M. Iu. Lermontov, and N. V. Gogol were subjected to severe censorship; N. A. Polevois journal Moskovskii telegraf was closed down in 1834, and N. I. Nadezhdins Teleskop in 1836.The period from 1848 to 1855 went down in the history of Russian literature as the age of terror in censorship. Frightened by the Revolution of 184849 in Western Europe, the tsarist regime stiffened its controls over periodicals and literary works, which it regarded as the chief vehicles of revolutionary ideas. A secret committee was established by order of Nicholas I on Apr. 2, 1848, to examine all publications that were already in print; anything that was deemed contrary to the governments views was reported to the tsar. (D. P. Buturlin headed the committee until 1849; N. N. Annenkov, until 1853; and M. A. Korf, until 1856.) Thus punitive censorship was added to the prior censorship system that was already in effect. On the basis of reports by the Buturlin Committee, M. E. Saltykov was deported to Viatka in 1848,1. S. Turgenev was arrested and exiled to Spasskoe-Lutovi-novo in 1852, and the Slavophiles were subjected to persecutions.The censorship terror reached its apogee after the trial of the Petrashevskii Circle. The Pocket Dictionary of Foreign Words, published by members of the circle, was destroyed. Special circulars were issued prohibiting the publication of research works on such subjects as folklore or the history of popular movements; the number of books, journals, and newspapers published in Russia was drastically reduced.After Russias defeat in the Crimean War of 185356 and the death of Nicholas I, the government was led to change its policy by the general quickening of social life, the extensive circulation of uncensored literature in manuscript form, and the establishment abroad of the Free Russian Printing House. The abolition of the Buturlin Committee on Dec. 6, 1855, marked the beginning of censorship reform. A set of temporary regulations on censorship and publishing, issued on Apr. 6, 1865, assigned censorship functions to a central administrative board for publishing; the board was under the Ministry of Internal Affairs, which also had jurisdiction over book trade matters, libraries, and printing houses. Prior censorship was no longer required for original works of a length of more than ten printers sheets, translated works of more than 20 printers sheets, periodicals published in the capital cities by permission of the minister of internal affairs, and works published by the academies and universities. Judicial liability was established for censorship violations; moreover, the confiscation of published material was to be effected by court order. The minister of internal affairs could issue warnings to journals and newspapers for harmful tendencies. After the third such warning the Senate could order the publication to be suspended for six months or be banned.The censorship reform of 1865 was one of the least consistent of the bourgeois reforms of the 1860s and 1870s. Even so, it was soon reduced to naught by various amendments. In 1868 the minister of internal affairs was given the right to prohibit the retail sale of periodicals. In 1872 the confiscation of published material was made subject to administrative order by the Committee of Ministers. In 1882 the right to prohibit the publication of periodicals was vested in a joint conference of the chief procurator of the Synod and the ministers of internal affairs, justice, and public education.The censors persecutions forced the closure of many newspapers and journalsfor example, of Sovremennik and Russkoe slovo in 1866, and of Otechestvennye zapiski in 1884. The press was not allowed to report on political trials, strikes, or peasants agitations. In 1895 the censors destroyed the collection Material for a Characterization of Our Economic Development, which contained V. I. Lenins article The Economic Content of Narodni-chestvo and the Criticism of It in Mr. Struves Book. Between 1865 and 1904, a total of 218 books was destroyed, 173 periodicals were given 282 warnings, 218 orders were issued prohibiting retail sales, and 27 publications were suspended. Between 1865 and 1901, ten different journals and 205 books were banned from public libraries and reading rooms; authors whose works were banned included N. G. Chernyshevskii, N. A. Dobroliubov, A. I. Herzen, D. I. Pisarev, L. N. Tolstoy, and N. S. Leskov.Under pressure of the revolutionary movement, the government issued temporary regulations on Nov. 24, 1905, and on Apr. 26, 1906, abolishing the system of prior censorship and again making authors and publishers responsible to the law courts. Nevertheless, the special security system providing for increased protection and emergency protection, which had been put into effect almost everywhere after the suppression of the December Armed Uprisings of 1905, gave broad scope to arbitrary administrative measures: between October 1905 and January 1907, 361 books were seized, 371 periodicals were closed, and 607 authors and editors were imprisoned or fined. Censorship was continuously used as a weapon of the tsarist regime in the latters struggle against the revolutionary movement and against democratic literature and journalism.The Constitution of the USSR, in accordance with the peoples interests and in order to strengthen and develop the socialist system, guarantees freedom of the press to all citizens. State control has been established in order to prevent the publication of certain news items in the public press and their dissemination through the mass medianamely, news items that reveal state secrets or that may be harmful to the interests of the working people.

REFERENCESSkabichevskii, A. M. Ocherki istorii russkoi tsenzury (17001863). St. Petersburg, 1892.Lemke, M. K. Epokha tsenzurnykh reform, 18591865 gg. St. Petersburg, 1904.Lemke, M. K. Ocherkipo istorii russkoi tsenzury i zhurnalistiki XIX st. St. Petersburg, 1904.Rozenberg, V., and V. Iakushkin. Russkaia pechat i tsenzura v ee proshlom i nastoiashchem. Moscow, 1905.Nikitenko, A. V. Dnevnik, vols. 13. Moscow, 195556.Feoktistov, E. M. Vospominaniia: Za kulisami politiki i literatury, 184818%. Leningrad, 1929.Berezhnoi, A. F. Tsarskaia tsenzura i borba bolshevikov za svobodu pechati (18951914). Leningrad, 1967.Baluev, B. P. Politicheskaia reaktsiia 80-kh godov XIX v. i russkaia zhurnalistika. Moscow, 1971.Svodnyi katalog russkoi nelegalnoi i zapreshchennoi pechati XIX v., parts 19. Moscow, 1971.

B. M. LAZAREVand B. IU. IVANOV

Read more here:

Government censorship | Article about Government …

Censorship – Wikipedia

The practice of suppressing information

Censorship is the suppression of speech, public communication, or other information, on the basis that such material is considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or “inconvenient”.[2][3][4] Censorship can be conducted by a government[5] private institutions, and corporations.

Governments[5] and private organizations may engage in censorship. Other groups or institutions may propose and petition for censorship.[6] When an individual such as an author or other creator engages in censorship of their own works or speech, it is referred to as self-censorship. It occurs in a variety of different media, including speech, books, music, films, and other arts, the press, radio, television, and the Internet for a variety of claimed reasons including national security, to control obscenity, child pornography, and hate speech, to protect children or other vulnerable groups, to promote or restrict political or religious views, and to prevent slander and libel.

Direct censorship may or may not be legal, depending on the type, location, and content. Many countries provide strong protections against censorship by law, but none of these protections are absolute and frequently a claim of necessity to balance conflicting rights is made, in order to determine what could and could not be censored. There are no laws against self-censorship.

In 399 BC, Greek philosopher, Socrates, defied attempts by the Greek state to censor his philosophical teachings and was sentenced to death by drinking a poison, hemlock. Socrates’ student, Plato, is said to have advocated censorship in his essay on The Republic, which opposed the existence of democracy. In contrast to Plato, Greek playwright Euripides (480406BC) defended the true liberty of freeborn men, including the right to speak freely. In 1766, Sweden became the first country to abolish censorship by law.[9]

The rationale for censorship is different for various types of information censored:

Cuban media used to be operated under the supervision of the Communist Party’s Department of Revolutionary Orientation, which “develops and coordinates propaganda strategies”.[15] Connection to the Internet is restricted and censored.[16]

The People’s Republic of China employs sophisticated censorship mechanisms, referred to as the Golden Shield Project, to monitor the internet. Popular search engines such as Baidu also remove politically sensitive search results.[17][18][19]

Strict censorship existed in the Eastern Bloc.[20] Throughout the bloc, the various ministries of culture held a tight rein on their writers.[21] Cultural products there reflected the propaganda needs of the state.[21] Party-approved censors exercised strict control in the early years.[22] In the Stalinist period, even the weather forecasts were changed if they suggested that the sun might not shine on May Day.[22] Under Nicolae Ceauescu 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.[22]

Possession and use of copying machines was tightly controlled in order to hinder production and distribution of samizdat, illegal self-published books and magazines. Possession of even a single samizdat manuscript such as a book by Andrei Sinyavsky was a serious crime which might involve a visit from the KGB. Another outlet for works which did not find favor with the authorities was publishing abroad.

Iraq under Baathist Saddam Hussein had much the same techniques of press censorship as did Romania under Nicolae Ceauescu but with greater potential violence.[citation needed]

According to Christian Mihr, executive director of Reporters Without Borders, “censorship in Serbia is neither direct nor transparent, but is easy to prove.” [23] According to Mihr there are numerous examples of censorship and self-censorship in Serbia [24] According to Mihr, Serbian prime minister Aleksandar Vui has proved “very sensitive to criticism, even on critical questions,” as was the case with Natalija Miletic, correspondent for Deutsche Welle Radio, who questioned him in Berlin about the media situation in Serbia and about allegations that some ministers in the Serbian government had plagiarized their diplomas, and who later received threats and offensive articles on the Serbian press.[24]

Multiple news outlets have accused Vui of anti-democratic strongman tendencies.[25][26][27][28][29] In July 2014, journalists associations were concerned about the freedom of the media in Serbia, in which Vui came under criticism.[30][31]

In September 2015 five members of United States Congress (Edie Bernice Johnson, Carlos Curbelo, Scott Perry, Adam Kinzinger, and Zoe Lofgren) have informed Vice President of the United States Joseph Biden that Aleksandar’s brother, Andrej Vui, is leading a group responsible for deteriorating media freedom in Serbia.[32]

In the Republic of Singapore, Section 33 of the Films Act originally banned the making, distribution and exhibition of “party political films”, at pain of a fine not exceeding $100,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years. The Act further defines a “party political film” as any film or video

In 2001, the short documentary called A Vision of Persistence on opposition politician J. B. Jeyaretnam was also banned for being a “party political film”. The makers of the documentary, all lecturers at the Ngee Ann Polytechnic, later submitted written apologies and withdrew the documentary from being screened at the 2001 Singapore International Film Festival in April, having been told they could be charged in court. Another short documentary called Singapore Rebel by Martyn See, which documented Singapore Democratic Party leader Dr Chee Soon Juan’s acts of civil disobedience, was banned from the 2005 Singapore International Film Festival on the same grounds and See is being investigated for possible violations of the Films Act.

This law, however, is often disregarded when such political films are made supporting the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP). Channel NewsAsia’s five-part documentary series on Singapore’s PAP ministers in 2005, for example, was not considered a party political film.

Exceptions are also made when political films are made concerning political parties of other nations. Films such as Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 911 are thus allowed to screen regardless of the law.

Since March 2009, the Films Act has been amended to allow party political films as long as they were deemed factual and objective by a consultative committee. Some months later, this committee lifted the ban on Singapore Rebel.

Independent journalism did not exist in the Soviet Union until Mikhail Gorbachev became its leader; all reporting was directed by the Communist Party or related organizations. Pravda, 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.

Online access to all language versions of Wikipedia was blocked in Turkey on 29 April 2017 by Erdoan’s government.[33]

In the United States, censorship occurs through books, film festivals, politics, and public schools.[34] See banned books for more information. Additionally, critics of campaign finance reform in the United States say this reform imposes widespread restrictions on political speech.[35][36]

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 was imprisoned and later was forced to flee. His book Open Veins of Latin America was banned by the right-wing military government, not only in Uruguay, but also in Chile and Argentina.[37]

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 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.[38] The World War II catchphrase “Loose lips sink ships” was used as a common justification to exercise official wartime censorship and encourage individual restraint when sharing potentially sensitive information.

An example of “sanitization” policies comes from the USSR under Joseph Stalin, 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 and totalitarianism.

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.[39][40]

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. Examples include the Galileo affair, Edict of Compigne, the Index Librorum Prohibitorum (list of prohibited books) and the condemnation of Salman Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses by Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Images of the Islamic figure Muhammad are also regularly censored. In some secular countries, this is sometimes done to prevent hurting religious sentiments.[41]

The content of school textbooks is often an issue of debate, since their target audience is young people. The term whitewashing is commonly used to refer to revisionism aimed at glossing over difficult or questionable historical events, or a biased presentation thereof. The reporting of military atrocities in history is extremely controversial, as in the case of The Holocaust (or Holocaust denial), Bombing of Dresden, the Nanking Massacre as found with Japanese history textbook controversies, the Armenian Genocide, the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, and the Winter Soldier Investigation of the Vietnam War.

In the context of secondary school education, the way facts and history 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 which is the version used by most school classes[42] contained approximately 75 separate edits, omissions, and changes from the original Bradbury manuscript.

In February 2006, a National Geographic cover was censored by the Nashravaran Journalistic Institute. The offending cover was about the subject of love and a picture of an embracing couple was hidden beneath a white sticker.[43][43]

Self-censorship is the act of censoring or classifying one’s own discourse. This is done out of fear of, or deference to, the sensibilities or preferences (actual or perceived) of others and without overt pressure from any specific party or institution of authority. Self-censorship is often practiced by film producers, film directors, publishers, news anchors, journalists, musicians, and other kinds of authors including individuals who use social media.[45]

According to a Pew Research Center and the Columbia Journalism Review survey, “About one-quarter of the local and national journalists say they have purposely avoided newsworthy stories, while nearly as many acknowledge they have softened the tone of stories to benefit the interests of their news organizations. Fully four-in-ten (41%) admit they have engaged in either or both of these practices.”[46]

Threats to media freedom have shown a significant increase in Europe in recent years, according to a study published in April 2017 by the Council of Europe.This results in a fear of physical or psychological violence, and the ultimate result is self-censorship by journalists.[47]

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.[48] Picture approval is the right given to an individual to choose which photos will be published and which will not. Robert Redford is well known for insisting upon picture approval.[49] 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.[citation needed]

Book censorship can be enacted at the national or sub-national level, and can carry legal penalties for their infraction. Books may also be challenged at a local, community level. As a result, books can be removed from schools or libraries, although these bans do not extend outside of that area.

Aside from the usual justifications of pornography and obscenity, some films are censored due to changing racial attitudes or political correctness in order to avoid ethnic stereotyping and/or ethnic offense despite its historical or artistic value. One example is the still withdrawn “Censored Eleven” series of animated cartoons, which may have been innocent then, but are “incorrect” now.

Film censorship is carried out by various countries to differing degrees. For example, only 34 foreign films a year are approved for official distribution in China’s strictly controlled film market.[50]

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.[51]

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 in order to make attempts of defection more difficult. Censorship of maps is also applied by Google Maps, where certain areas are grayed out or blacked or areas are purposely left outdated with old imagery.[52]

Under subsection 48(3) and (4) of the Penang Islamic Religious Administration Enactment 2004, non-Muslims in Malaysia are penalized for using the following words, or to write or publish them, in any form, version or translation in any language or for use in any publicity material in any medium:”Allah”, “Firman Allah”, “Ulama”, “Hadith”, “Ibadah”, “Kaabah”, “Qadhi'”, “Illahi”, “Wahyu”, “Mubaligh”, “Syariah”, “Qiblat”, “Haji”, “Mufti”, “Rasul”, “Iman”, “Dakwah”, “Wali”, “Fatwa”, “Imam”, “Nabi”, “Sheikh”, “Khutbah”, “Tabligh”, “Akhirat”, “Azan”, “Al Quran”, “As Sunnah”, “Auliya'”, “Karamah”, “False Moon God”, “Syahadah”, “Baitullah”, “Musolla”, “Zakat Fitrah”, “Hajjah”, “Taqwa” and “Soleh”.[53][54][55]

Publishers of the Spanish reference dictionary Real Acdemia Espaola received petitions to censor the entries “Jewishness”, “Gypsiness”, “black work” and “weak sex”, claiming that they are either offensive or non-PC.[56]

One elementary school’s obscenity filter changed every reference to the word “tit” to “breast,” so when a child typed “U.S. Constitution” into the school computer, it changed it to Consbreastution.[57]

Art is loved and feared because its evocative power. Destroying or oppressing art can potentially justify its meaning even more.[58]

British photographer and visual artist Graham Ovenden’s photos and paintings were ordered to be destroyed by a London’s magistrate court in 2015 for being “indecent”[59] and their copies had been removed from the online Tate gallery.[60]

A 1980 Israeli law forbade banned artwork composed of the four colours of the Palestinian flag,[61] and Palestinians were arrested for displaying such artwork or even for carrying sliced melons with the same pattern.[62][63][64]

Moath al-Alwi is a Guantanamo Bay Prisoner who creates model ships as an expression of art. Alwi does so with the few tools he has at his disposal such as floss and shampoo bottles, and he is also allowed to use a small pair of scissors with rounded edges. A few of Alwis pieces are on display at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York. There are also other artworks on display at the College that were created by other inmates. The artwork that is being displayed might be the only way for some of the inmates to communicate with the outside. Recently things have changed though. The military has come up with a new policy that wont allow the artwork at Guantanamo Bay Military Prison to leave the prison. The art work created by Alwi and other prisoners is now government property and can be destroyed by them or disposed in whatever way they choose, making it no longer the artists property. [65]

Around 300 artists in Cuba are fighting for their artistic freedom due to new censorship rules Cubas government has in place for artists. Recently, Tania Bruguera, a musician was detained upon arriving to Havana and released after four days because of these new censorships restrains Cuba has on artists there.[66]

An example of extreme state censorship was the Nazis requirements of using art as propaganda. Art was only allowed to be used as a political instrument to control people and failure to act in accordance with the censors was punishable by law, even fatal. The Degenerate Art Exhibition is a historical instance thats goal was to advertise Nazi values and slander others. [67]

Internet censorship is control or suppression of the publishing or accessing of 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. Individuals and organizations may engage in self-censorship 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 websites 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.[73]

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 and data havens (such as Freenet) 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. Nevertheless, blocking remains an effective means of limiting access to sensitive information for most users when censors, such as those in China, are able to devote significant resources to building and maintaining a comprehensive censorship system.[73]

Views about the feasibility and effectiveness of Internet censorship have evolved in parallel with the development of the Internet and censorship technologies:

A BBC World Service poll of 27,973 adults in 26 countries, including 14,306 Internet users,[77] was conducted between 30 November 2009 and 7 February 2010. The head of the polling organization felt, overall, that the poll showed that:

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).[79]

The rising usages of social media in many nations has led to the emergence of citizens organizing protests through social media, sometimes called “Twitter Revolutions”. The most notable of these social media led protests were parts Arab Spring uprisings, starting in 2010. In response to the use of social media in these protests, the Tunisian government began a hack of Tunisian citizens’ Facebook accounts, and reports arose of accounts being deleted.[80]

Automated systems can be used to censor social media posts, and therefore limit what citizens can say online. This most notably occurs in China, where social media posts are automatically censored depending on content. In 2013, Harvard political science professor Gary King led a study to determine what caused social media posts to be censored and found that posts mentioning the government were not more or less likely to be deleted if they were supportive or critical of the government. Posts mentioning collective action were more likely to be deleted than those that had not mentioned collective action.[81] Currently, social media censorship appears primarily as a way to restrict Internet users’ ability to organize protests. For the Chinese government, seeing citizens unhappy with local governance is beneficial as state and national leaders can replace unpopular officials. King and his researchers were able to predict when certain officials would be removed based on the number of unfavorable social media posts.[82]

Research has proved that criticism is tolerable on social media sites, therefore it is not censored unless it has a higher chance of collective action. It isn’t important whether the criticism is supportive or unsupportive of the states’ leaders, the main priority of censoring certain social media posts is to make sure that no big actions are being made due to something that was said on the internet. Posts that challenge the Party’s political leading role in the Chinese government are more likely to be censored due to the challenges it poses to the Chinese Communist Party.[83]

Since the early 1980s, advocates of video games have emphasized their use as an expressive medium, arguing for their protection under the laws governing freedom of speech and also as an educational tool. Detractors argue that video games are harmful and therefore should be subject to legislative oversight and restrictions. Many video games have certain elements removed or edited due to regional rating standards.[84][85]For example, in the Japanese and PAL Versions of No More Heroes, blood splatter and gore is removed from the gameplay. Decapitation scenes are implied, but not shown. Scenes of missing body parts after having been cut off, are replaced with the same scene, but showing the body parts fully intact.[86]

Surveillance and censorship are different. Surveillance can be performed without censorship, but it is harder to engage in censorship without some form of surveillance.[87] And even when surveillance does not lead directly to censorship, the widespread knowledge or belief that a person, their computer, or their use of the Internet is under surveillance can lead to self-censorship.[88]

Protection of sources is no longer just a matter of journalistic ethics; it increasingly also depends on the journalist’s computer skills and all journalists should equip themselves with a “digital survival kit” if they are exchanging sensitive information online or storing it on a computer or mobile phone.[89][90] And individuals associated with high-profile rights organizations, dissident, protest, or reform groups are urged to take extra precautions to protect their online identities.[91]

The former Soviet Union maintained a particularly extensive program of state-imposed censorship. The main organ for official censorship in the Soviet Union was the Chief Agency for Protection of Military and State Secrets generally known as the Glavlit, its Russian acronym. The Glavlit handled censorship matters arising from domestic writings of just about any kindeven 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 Glavlit’s control. All press agencies and radio and television stations had Glavlit representatives on their editorial staffs.[citation needed]

Sometimes, public knowledge of the existence of a specific document is subtly suppressed, a situation resembling censorship. The authorities taking such action will justify it by declaring the work to be “subversive” or “inconvenient”. An example is Michel Foucault’s 1978 text Sexual Morality and the Law (later republished as The Danger of Child Sexuality), originally published as La loi de la pudeur [literally, “the law of decency”]. This work defends the decriminalization of statutory rape and the abolition of age of consent laws.[citation needed]

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 (private publishing).[92]

Censorship has been criticized throughout history for being unfair and hindering progress. In a 1997 essay on Internet censorship, social commentator Michael Landier claims that censorship is counterproductive as it prevents the censored topic from being discussed. Landier expands his argument by claiming that those who impose censorship must consider what they censor to be true, as individuals believing themselves to be correct would welcome the opportunity to disprove those with opposing views.[93]

Censorship is often used to impose moral values on society, as in the censorship of material considered obscene. English novelist E. M. Forster was a staunch opponent of censoring material on the grounds that it was obscene or immoral, raising the issue of moral subjectivity and the constant changing of moral values. When the novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover was put on trial in 1960, Forster wrote:[94]

Lady Chatterley’s Lover is a literary work of importance…I do not think that it could be held obscene, but am in a difficulty here, for the reason that I have never been able to follow the legal definition of obscenity. The law tells me that obscenity may deprave and corrupt, but as far as I know, it offers no definition of depravity or corruption.

Censorship by country collects information on censorship, internet censorship, press freedom, freedom of speech, and human rights 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.

Related articles

Freedoms

Articles related to censorship

See the article here:

Censorship – Wikipedia

Censorship | Definition of Censorship by Merriam-Webster

1a : the institution, system, or practice of censoring They oppose government censorship. b : the actions or practices of censors especially : censorial control exercised repressively censorship that has permitted a very limited dispersion of facts Philip Wylie 2 : the office, power, or term of a Roman censor 3 : exclusion from consciousness by the psychic censor

Go here to see the original:

Censorship | Definition of Censorship by Merriam-Webster

censorship | Definition of censorship in English by Oxford …

nounmass noun

1The suppression or prohibition of any parts of books, films, news, etc. that are considered obscene, politically unacceptable, or a threat to security.

the regulation imposes censorship on all media

as modifier we have strict censorship laws

2count noun (in ancient Rome) the office or position of censor.

he celebrated a triumph together with his father and they held the censorship jointly

Visit link:

censorship | Definition of censorship in English by Oxford …

China Is Trying to Scrub Bikinis and Smoking From the Internet

A new story reveals how Chinese live-streaming company Inke uses a combination of human moderators and AI to facilitate government censorship.

Cleaning Cyberspace

On Monday, the South China Morning Post published a story about the content moderation operations at Inke, one of China’s largest live-streaming companies.

The piece offers a rare glimpse at how China’s private sector helps facilitate government censorship. In some cases, that means flagging streams of people smoking or wearing bikinis — content that would likely seem fairly innocuous to an American audience — but in others, it means preventing internet viewers from seeing streams of people committing acts of terrorism or violence.

That’s the same kind of content multinational corporations such as Facebook have had trouble moderating — raising questions about what these Chinese companies have figured out that American ones haven’t.

Evolving Censorship

Inke tasks a team of 1,200 moderators with policing the streams of its 25 million users, according to SCMP.

The moderators watch streams 10- to 15-seconds before they actually go live, and in that time, they’re expected to catch anything “that is against the law and regulations, against mainstream values, and against the company’s values,” Zhi Heng, Inke’s content safety team leader, told the SCMP.

Inke defers to guidelines published by the China Association of Performing Arts to know what content falls under that umbrella, and according to the SCMP story, it ranges from politically sensitive speech and violence to people smoking or wearing bikinis.

The document is updated weekly, however, meaning content that might be acceptable one week could be censored the next, or vice versa.

To make this massive task of censoring content a little more manageable on its human moderators, Inke also employs algorithms and recognition software capable of filtering content into different risk categories.

The company sometimes dedicates just one human reviewer to watching streams considered “low-risk,” such as cooking shows, according to SCMP, while higher-risk streams receive closer scrutiny.

Learning Opportunity

The idea of censoring streams of people smoking cigarettes or wearing bikinis might seem ridiculous to a Western audience.

However, if Inke’s combination of human and AI moderators is effective at flagging the content deemed objectionable in China, it’s worth considering what it’s doing that others, such as Facebook, aren’t. Are Inke’s algorithms better in some discernible way? Has it stumbled upon the optimum human moderator-to-user ratio?

You might not agree with the content China is censoring, but content moderation isn’t by default objectionable — even Facebook’s own execs believe the company should have prevented the horrific livestream of the Christchurch shooting from reaching its audience, for example.

So perhaps there’s something Facebook and others could learn from how Inke is managing the job of filtering out undesirable online content, even if we don’t agree with China’s definition of undesirable.

READ MORE: No smoking, no tattoos, no bikinis: inside China’s war to ‘clean up’ the internet [South China Morning Post]

More on censorship: China Is Censoring “Genetically Edited Babies” on Social Media

The post China Is Trying to Scrub Bikinis and Smoking From the Internet appeared first on Futurism.

Read more:

China Is Trying to Scrub Bikinis and Smoking From the Internet

Censorship – Wikipedia

The practice of suppressing information

Censorship is the suppression of speech, public communication, or other information, on the basis that such material is considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or “inconvenient”.[1][2][3] Censorship can be conducted by a government[4] private institutions, and corporations.

Governments[4] and private organizations may engage in censorship. Other groups or institutions may propose and petition for censorship.[5] Using the term to describe actions by private institutions and corporations is controversial[citation needed], as the word implies government intervention.[5] When an individual such as an author or other creator engages in censorship of their own works or speech, it is referred to as self-censorship. It occurs in a variety of different media, including speech, books, music, films, and other arts, the press, radio, television, and the Internet for a variety of claimed reasons including national security, to control obscenity, child pornography, and hate speech, to protect children or other vulnerable groups, to promote or restrict political or religious views, and to prevent slander and libel.

Direct censorship may or may not be legal, depending on the type, location, and content. Many countries provide strong protections against censorship by law, but none of these protections are absolute and frequently a claim of necessity to balance conflicting rights is made, in order to determine what could and could not be censored. There are no laws against self-censorship.

In 399 BC, Greek philosopher, Socrates, defied attempts by the Greek state to censor his philosophical teachings and was sentenced to death by drinking a poison, hemlock. Socrates’ student, Plato, is said to have advocated censorship in his essay on The Republic, which opposed the existence of democracy. In contrast to Plato, Greek playwright Euripides (480406BC) defended the true liberty of freeborn men, including the right to speak freely. In 1766, Sweden became the first country to abolish censorship by law.[8]

The rationale for censorship is different for various types of information censored:

Cuban media used to be operated under the supervision of the Communist Party’s Department of Revolutionary Orientation, which “develops and coordinates propaganda strategies”.[14] Connection to the Internet is restricted and censored.[15]

The People’s Republic of China employs sophisticated censorship mechanisms, referred to as the Golden Shield Project, to monitor the internet. Popular search engines such as Baidu also remove politically sensitive search results.[16][17][18]

Strict censorship existed in the Eastern Bloc.[19] Throughout the bloc, the various ministries of culture held a tight rein on their writers.[20] Cultural products there reflected the propaganda needs of the state.[20] Party-approved censors exercised strict control in the early years.[21] In the Stalinist period, even the weather forecasts were changed if they suggested that the sun might not shine on May Day.[21] Under Nicolae Ceauescu 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.[21]

Possession and use of copying machines was tightly controlled in order to hinder production and distribution of samizdat, illegal self-published books and magazines. Possession of even a single samizdat manuscript such as a book by Andrei Sinyavsky was a serious crime which might involve a visit from the KGB. Another outlet for works which did not find favor with the authorities was publishing abroad.

Iraq under Baathist Saddam Hussein had much the same techniques of press censorship as did Romania under Nicolae Ceauescu but with greater potential violence.[citation needed]

According to Christian Mihr, executive director of Reporters Without Borders, “censorship in Serbia is neither direct nor transparent, but is easy to prove.” [22] According to Mihr there are numerous examples of censorship and self-censorship in Serbia [23] According to Mihr, Serbian prime minister Aleksandar Vui has proved “very sensitive to criticism, even on critical questions,” as was the case with Natalija Miletic, correspondent for Deutsche Welle Radio, who questioned him in Berlin about the media situation in Serbia and about allegations that some ministers in the Serbian government had plagiarized their diplomas, and who later received threats and offensive articles on the Serbian press.[23]

Multiple news outlets have accused Vui of anti-democratic strongman tendencies.[24][25][26][27][28] In July 2014, journalists associations were concerned about the freedom of the media in Serbia, in which Vui came under criticism.[29][30]

In September 2015 five members of United States Congress (Edie Bernice Johnson, Carlos Curbelo, Scott Perry, Adam Kinzinger, and Zoe Lofgren) have informed Vice President of the United States Joseph Biden that Aleksandar’s brother, Andrej Vui, is leading a group responsible for deteriorating media freedom in Serbia.[31]

In the Republic of Singapore, Section 33 of the Films Act originally banned the making, distribution and exhibition of “party political films”, at pain of a fine not exceeding $100,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years. The Act further defines a “party political film” as any film or video

In 2001, the short documentary called A Vision of Persistence on opposition politician J. B. Jeyaretnam was also banned for being a “party political film”. The makers of the documentary, all lecturers at the Ngee Ann Polytechnic, later submitted written apologies and withdrew the documentary from being screened at the 2001 Singapore International Film Festival in April, having been told they could be charged in court. Another short documentary called Singapore Rebel by Martyn See, which documented Singapore Democratic Party leader Dr Chee Soon Juan’s acts of civil disobedience, was banned from the 2005 Singapore International Film Festival on the same grounds and See is being investigated for possible violations of the Films Act.

This law, however, is often disregarded when such political films are made supporting the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP). Channel NewsAsia’s five-part documentary series on Singapore’s PAP ministers in 2005, for example, was not considered a party political film.

Exceptions are also made when political films are made concerning political parties of other nations. Films such as Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 911 are thus allowed to screen regardless of the law.

Since March 2009, the Films Act has been amended to allow party political films as long as they were deemed factual and objective by a consultative committee. Some months later, this committee lifted the ban on Singapore Rebel.

Independent journalism did not exist in the Soviet Union until Mikhail Gorbachev became its leader; all reporting was directed by the Communist Party or related organizations. Pravda, 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.

Online access to all language versions of Wikipedia was blocked in Turkey on 29 April 2017 by Erdoan’s government.[32]

In the United States, censorship occurs through books, film festivals, politics, and public schools.[33] See banned books for more information. Additionally, critics of campaign finance reform in the United States say this reform imposes widespread restrictions on political speech.[34][35]

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 was imprisoned and later was forced to flee. His book Open Veins of Latin America was banned by the right-wing military government, not only in Uruguay, but also in Chile and Argentina.[36]

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 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 catchphrase “Loose lips sink ships” was used as a common justification to exercise official wartime censorship and encourage individual restraint when sharing potentially sensitive information.

An example of “sanitization” policies comes from the USSR under Joseph Stalin, 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 and totalitarianism.

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.[37][38]

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. Examples include the Galileo affair, Edict of Compigne, the Index Librorum Prohibitorum (list of prohibited books) and the condemnation of Salman Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses by Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Images of the Islamic figure Muhammad are also regularly censored. In some secular countries, this is sometimes done to prevent hurting religious sentiments.[39]

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 is extremely controversial, as in the case of The Holocaust (or Holocaust denial), Bombing of Dresden, the Nanking Massacre as found with Japanese history textbook controversies, the Armenian Genocide, the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, and the Winter Soldier Investigation of the Vietnam War.

In the context of secondary school education, the way facts and history 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 which is the version used by most school classes[40] contained approximately 75 separate edits, omissions, and changes from the original Bradbury manuscript.

In February 2006 a National Geographic cover was censored by the Nashravaran Journalistic Institute. The offending cover was about the subject of love and a picture of an embracing couple was hidden beneath a white sticker.[41][41]

Self-censorship is the act of censoring or classifying one’s own blog, book, film, or other forms of media. This is done out of fear of, or deference to, the sensibilities or preferences (actual or perceived) of others and without overt pressure from any specific party or institution of authority. Self-censorship is often practiced by film producers, film directors, publishers, news anchors, journalists, musicians, and other kinds of authors including individuals who use social media.[43]

According to a Pew Research Center and the Columbia Journalism Review survey, “About one-quarter of the local and national journalists say they have purposely avoided newsworthy stories, while nearly as many acknowledge they have softened the tone of stories to benefit the interests of their news organizations. Fully four-in-ten (41%) admit they have engaged in either or both of these practices.”[44]

Threats to media freedom have shown a significant increase in Europe in recent years, according to a study published in April 2017 by the Council of Europe.This results in a fear of physical or psychological violence, and the ultimate result is self-censorship by journalists.[45]

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.[46] Picture approval is the right given to an individual to choose which photos will be published and which will not. Robert Redford is well known for insisting upon picture approval.[47] 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.[citation needed]

Book censorship can be enacted at the national or sub-national level, and can carry legal penalties for their infraction. Books may also be challenged at a local, community level. As a result, books can be removed from schools or libraries, although these bans do not extend outside of that area.

Aside from the usual justifications of pornography and obscenity, some films are censored due to changing racial attitudes or political correctness in order to avoid ethnic stereotyping and/or ethnic offense despite its historical or artistic value. One example is the still withdrawn “Censored Eleven” series of animated cartoons, which may have been innocent then, but are “incorrect” now.

Film censorship is carried out by various countries to differing degrees. For example, only 34 foreign films a year are approved for official distribution in China’s strictly controlled film market.[48]

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.[49]

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 in order to make attempts of defection more difficult. Censorship of maps is also applied by Google Maps, where certain areas are grayed out or blacked or areas are purposely left outdated with old imagery.[50]

Under subsection 48(3) and (4) of the Penang Islamic Religious Administration Enactment 2004, non-Muslims in Malaysia are penalized for using the following words, or to write or publish them, in any form, version or translation in any language or for use in any publicity material in any medium:”Allah”, “Firman Allah”, “Ulama”, “Hadith”, “Ibadah”, “Kaabah”, “Qadhi'”, “Illahi”, “Wahyu”, “Mubaligh”, “Syariah”, “Qiblat”, “Haji”, “Mufti”, “Rasul”, “Iman”, “Dakwah”, “Wali”, “Fatwa”, “Imam”, “Nabi”, “Sheikh”, “Khutbah”, “Tabligh”, “Akhirat”, “Azan”, “Al Quran”, “As Sunnah”, “Auliya'”, “Karamah”, “False Moon God”, “Syahadah”, “Baitullah”, “Musolla”, “Zakat Fitrah”, “Hajjah”, “Taqwa” and “Soleh”.[51][52][53]

Publishers of the Spanish reference dictionary Real Acdemia Espaola received petitions to censor the entries “Jewishness”, “Gypsiness”, “black work” and “weak sex”, claiming that they are either offensive or non-PC.[54]

One elementary school’s obscenity filter changed every reference to the word “tit” to “breast,” so when a child typed “U.S. Constitution” into the school computer, it changed it to Consbreastution.[55]

British photographer and visual artist Graham Ovenden’s photos and paintings were ordered to be destroyed by a London’s magistrate court in 2015 for being “indecent”[56] and their copies had been removed from the online Tate gallery.[57]

A 1980 Israeli law forbade banned artwork composed of the four colours of the Palestinian flag,[58] and Palestinians were arrested for displaying such artwork or even for carrying sliced melons with the same pattern.[59][60][61]

Internet censorship is control or suppression of the publishing or accessing of 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. Individuals and organizations may engage in self-censorship 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 websites 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.[67]

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 and data havens (such as Freenet) 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. Nevertheless, blocking remains an effective means of limiting access to sensitive information for most users when censors, such as those in China, are able to devote significant resources to building and maintaining a comprehensive censorship system.[67]

Views about the feasibility and effectiveness of Internet censorship have evolved in parallel with the development of the Internet and censorship technologies:

A BBC World Service poll of 27,973 adults in 26 countries, including 14,306 Internet users,[71] was conducted between 30 November 2009 and 7 February 2010. The head of the polling organization felt, overall, that the poll showed that:

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).[73]

The rising usages of social media in many nations has led to the emergence of citizens organizing protests through social media, sometimes called “Twitter Revolutions”. The most notable of these social media led protests were parts Arab Spring uprisings, starting in 2010. In response to the use of social media in these protests, the Tunisian government began a hack of Tunisian citizens’ Facebook accounts, and reports arose of accounts being deleted.[74]

Automated systems can be used to censor social media posts, and therefore limit what citizens can say online. This most notably occurs in China, where social media posts are automatically censored depending on content. In 2013, Harvard political science professor Gary King led a study to determine what caused social media posts to be censored and found that posts mentioning the government were not more or less likely to be deleted if they were supportive or critical of the government. Posts mentioning collective action were more likely to be deleted than those that had not mentioned collective action.[75] Currently, social media censorship appears primarily as a way to restrict Internet users’ ability to organize protests. For the Chinese government, seeing citizens unhappy with local governance is beneficial as state and national leaders can replace unpopular officials. King and his researchers were able to predict when certain officials would be removed based on the number of unfavorable social media posts.[76]

Research has proved that criticism is tolerable on social media sites, therefore it is not censored unless it has a higher chance of collective action. It isn’t important whether the criticism is supportive or unsupportive of the states’ leaders, the main priority of censoring certain social media posts is to make sure that no big actions are being made due to something that was said on the internet. Posts that challenge the Party’s political leading role in the Chinese government are more likely to be censored due to the challenges it poses to the Chinese Communist Party.[77]

Since the early 1980s, advocates of video games have emphasized their use as an expressive medium, arguing for their protection under the laws governing freedom of speech and also as an educational tool. Detractors argue that video games are harmful and therefore should be subject to legislative oversight and restrictions. Many video games have certain elements removed or edited due to regional rating standards.[78][79]For example, in the Japanese and PAL Versions of No More Heroes, blood splatter and gore is removed from the gameplay. Decapitation scenes are implied, but not shown. Scenes of missing body parts after having been cut off, are replaced with the same scene, but showing the body parts fully intact.[80]

Surveillance and censorship are different. Surveillance can be performed without censorship, but it is harder to engage in censorship without some form of surveillance.[81] And even when surveillance does not lead directly to censorship, the widespread knowledge or belief that a person, their computer, or their use of the Internet is under surveillance can lead to self-censorship.[82]

Protection of sources is no longer just a matter of journalistic ethics; it increasingly also depends on the journalist’s computer skills and all journalists should equip themselves with a “digital survival kit” if they are exchanging sensitive information online or storing it on a computer or mobile phone.[83][84] And individuals associated with high-profile rights organizations, dissident, protest, or reform groups are urged to take extra precautions to protect their online identities.[85]

The former Soviet Union maintained a particularly extensive program of state-imposed censorship. The main organ for official censorship in the Soviet Union was the Chief Agency for Protection of Military and State Secrets generally known as the Glavlit, its Russian acronym. The Glavlit handled censorship matters arising from domestic writings of just about any kindeven 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 Glavlit’s control. All press agencies and radio and television stations had Glavlit representatives on their editorial staffs.[citation needed]

Sometimes, public knowledge of the existence of a specific document is subtly suppressed, a situation resembling censorship. The authorities taking such action will justify it by declaring the work to be “subversive” or “inconvenient”. An example is Michel Foucault’s 1978 text Sexual Morality and the Law (later republished as The Danger of Child Sexuality), originally published as La loi de la pudeur [literally, “the law of decency”]. This work defends the decriminalization of statutory rape and the abolition of age of consent laws.[citation needed]

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 (private publishing).[86]

Censorship has been criticized throughout history for being unfair and hindering progress. In a 1997 essay on Internet censorship, social commentator Michael Landier claims that censorship is counterproductive as it prevents the censored topic from being discussed. Landier expands his argument by claiming that those who impose censorship must consider what they censor to be true, as individuals believing themselves to be correct would welcome the opportunity to disprove those with opposing views.[87]

Censorship is often used to impose moral values on society, as in the censorship of material considered obscene. English novelist E. M. Forster was a staunch opponent of censoring material on the grounds that it was obscene or immoral, raising the issue of moral subjectivity and the constant changing of moral values. When the novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover was put on trial in 1960, Forster wrote:[88]

Lady Chatterley’s Lover is a literary work of importance…I do not think that it could be held obscene, but am in a difficulty here, for the reason that I have never been able to follow the legal definition of obscenity. The law tells me that obscenity may deprave and corrupt, but as far as I know, it offers no definition of depravity or corruption.

Censorship by country collects information on censorship, internet censorship, press freedom, freedom of speech, and human rights 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.

Related articles

Freedoms

Articles related to censorship

Read the rest here:

Censorship – Wikipedia

What Is Censorship? | American Civil Liberties Union

Censorship, the suppression of words, images, or ideas that are “offensive,” happens whenever some people succeed in imposing their personal political or moral values on others. Censorship can be carried out by the government as well as private pressure groups. Censorship by the government is unconstitutional.

In contrast, when private individuals or groups organize boycotts against stores that sell magazines of which they disapprove, their actions are protected by the First Amendment, although they can become dangerous in the extreme. Private pressure groups, not the government, promulgated and enforced the infamous Hollywood blacklists during the McCarthy period. But these private censorship campaigns are best countered by groups and individuals speaking out and organizing in defense of the threatened expression.

American society has always been deeply ambivalent about these questions. On the one hand, our history is filled with examples of overt government censorship, from the 1873 Comstock Law to the 1996 Communications Decency Act. On the other hand, the commitment to freedom of imagination and expression is deeply embedded in our national psyche, buttressed by the First Amendment, and supported by a long line of Supreme Court decisions.

The Supreme Court has interpreted the First Amendment’s protection of artistic expression very broadly. It extends not only to books, theatrical works and paintings, but also to posters, television, music videos and comic books — whatever the human creative impulse produces.

Two fundamental principles come into play whenever a court must decide a case involving freedom of expression. The first is “content neutrality”– the government cannot limit expression just because any listener, or even the majority of a community, is offended by its content. In the context of art and entertainment, this means tolerating some works that we might find offensive, insulting, outrageous — or just plain bad.

The second principle is that expression may be restricted only if it will clearly cause direct and imminent harm to an important societal interest. The classic example is falsely shouting fire in a crowded theater and causing a stampede. Even then, the speech may be silenced or punished only if there is no other way to avert the harm.

SEXSEXUAL SPEECHSex in art and entertainment is the most frequent target of censorship crusades. Many examples come to mind. A painting of the classical statue of Venus de Milo was removed from a store because the managers of the shopping mall found its semi-nudity “too shocking.” Hundreds of works of literature, from Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings to John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, have been banned from public schools based on their sexual content.

A museum director was charged with a crime for including sexually explicit photographs by Robert Mapplethorpe in an art exhibit.

American law is, on the whole, the most speech-protective in the world — but sexual expression is treated as a second-class citizen. No causal link between exposure to sexually explicit material and anti-social or violent behavior has ever been scientifically established, in spite of many efforts to do so. Rather, the Supreme Court has allowed censorship of sexual speech on moral grounds — a remnant of our nation’s Puritan heritage.

This does not mean that all sexual expression can be censored, however. Only a narrow range of “obscene” material can be suppressed; a term like “pornography” has no legal meaning . Nevertheless, even the relatively narrow obscenity exception serves as a vehicle for abuse by government authorities as well as pressure groups who want to impose their personal moral views on other people.

PORNOGRAPHIC! INDECENT! OBSCENE!Justice John Marshall Harlan’s line, “one man’s vulgarity is another’s lyric,” sums up the impossibility of developing a definition of obscenity that isn’t hopelessly vague and subjective. And Justice Potter Stewart’s famous assurance, “I know it when I see it,” is of small comfort to artists, writers, movie directors and lyricists who must navigate the murky waters of obscenity law trying to figure out what police, prosecutors, judges and juries will think.

The Supreme Court’s current definition of constitutionally unprotected Obscenity, first announced in a 1973 case called Miller v. California, has three requirements. The work must 1) appeal to the average person’s prurient (shameful, morbid) interest in sex; 2) depict sexual conduct in a “patently offensive way” as defined by community standards; and 3) taken as a whole, lack serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.

The Supreme Court has held that Indecent expression — in contrast with “obscenity” — is entitled to some constitutional protection, but that indecency in some media (broadcasting, cable, and telephone) may be regulated. In its 1978 decision in Federal Communications Commission v. Pacifica, the Court ruled that the government could require radio and television stations to air “indecent” material only during those hours when children would be unlikely listeners or viewers. Broadcast indecency was defined as: “language that describes, in terms patently offensive as measured by contemporary community standards for the broadcast medium, sexual or excretory activities or organs.” This vague concept continues to baffle both the public and the courts.

PORNOGRAPHY is not a legal term at all. Its dictionary definition is “writing or pictures intended to arouse sexual desire.” Pornography comes in as many varieties as the human sexual impulse and is protected by the First Amendment unless it meets the definition for illegal obscenity.

VIOLENCEIS MEDIA VIOLENCE A THREAT TO SOCIETY?Today’s calls for censorship are not motivated solely by morality and taste, but also by the widespread belief that exposure to images of violence causes people to act in destructive ways. Pro-censorship forces, including many politicians, often cite a multitude of “scientific studies” that allegedly prove fictional violence leads to real-life violence.

There is, in fact, virtually no evidence that fictional violence causes otherwise stable people to become violent. And if we suppressed material based on the actions of unstable people, no work of fiction or art would be safe from censorship. Serial killer Theodore Bundy collected cheerleading magazines. And the work most often cited by psychopaths as justification for their acts of violence is the Bible.

But what about the rest of us? Does exposure to media violence actually lead to criminal or anti-social conduct by otherwise stable people, including children, who spend an average of 28 hours watching television each week? These are important questions. If there really were a clear cause-and-effect relationship between what normal children see on TV and harmful actions, then limits on such expression might arguably be warranted.

WHAT THE STUDIES SHOWStudies on the relationship between media violence and real violence are the subject of considerable debate. Children have been shown TV programs with violent episodes in a laboratory setting and then tested for “aggressive” behavior. Some of these studies suggest that watching TV violence may temporarily induce “object aggression” in some children (such as popping balloons or hitting dolls or playing sports more aggressively) but not actual criminal violence against another person.

CORRELATIONAL STUDIES that seek to explain why some aggressive people have a history of watching a lot of violent TV suffer from the chicken-and-egg dilemma: does violent TV cause such people to behave aggressively, or do aggressive people simply prefer more violent entertainment? There is no definitive answer. But all scientists agree that statistical correlations between two phenomena do not mean that one causes the other.

INTERNATIONAL COMPARISONS are no more helpful. Japanese TV and movies are famous for their extreme, graphic violence, but Japan has a very low crime rate — much lower than many societies in which television watching is relatively rare. What the sudies reveal on the issue of fictional violence and real world aggression is — not much.

The only clear assertion that can be made is that the relationship between art and human behavior is a very complex one. Violent and sexually explicit art and entertainment have been a staple of human cultures from time immemorial. Many human behavioralists believe that these themes have a useful and constructive societal role, serving as a vicarious outlet for individual aggression.

WHERE DO THE EXPERTS AGREE?Whatever influence fictional violence has on behavior, most expert believe its effects are marginal compared to other factors. Even small children know the difference between fiction and reality, and their attitudes and behavior are shaped more by their life circumstances than by the books they read or the TV they watch. In 1972, the U.S. Surgeon General’s Advisory Committee on Television and Social Behavior released a 200-page report, “Television and Growing Up: The Impact of Televised Violence,” which concluded, “The effect [of television] is small compared with many other possible causes, such as parental attitudes or knowledge of and experience with the real violence of our society.” Twenty-one years later, the American Psychological Association published its 1993 report, “Violence & Youth,” and concluded, “The greatest predictor of future violent behavior is a previous history of violence.” In 1995, the Center for Communication Policy at UCLA, which monitors TV violence, came to a similar conclusion in its yearly report: “It is known that television does not have a simple, direct stimulus-response effect on its audiences.”

Blaming the media does not get us very far, and, to the extent that diverts the public’s attention from the real causes of violence in society, it may do more harm than good.

WHICH MEDIA VIOLENCE WOULD YOU BAN?A pro-censorship member of Congress once attacked the following shows for being too violent: The Miracle Worker, Civil War Journal, Star Trek 9, The Untouchables, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. What would be left if all these kinds of programs were purged from the airwaves? Is there good violence and bad violence? If so, who decides? Sports and the news are at least as violent as fiction, from the fights that erupt during every televised hockey game, to the videotaped beating of Rodney King by the LA Police Department, shown over and over gain on prime time TV. If we accept censorship of violence in the media, we will have to censor sports and news programs.

Read the rest here:

What Is Censorship? | American Civil Liberties Union

Censorship | Definition of Censorship by Merriam-Webster

1a : the institution, system, or practice of censoring They oppose government censorship. b : the actions or practices of censors especially : censorial control exercised repressively censorship that has permitted a very limited dispersion of facts Philip Wylie 2 : the office, power, or term of a Roman censor 3 : exclusion from consciousness by the psychic censor

View original post here:

Censorship | Definition of Censorship by Merriam-Webster

Government censorship | Article about Government …

the control exercised by official authorities, whether secular or ecclesiastical, over the contents, publication, and circulation of printed matter, over the performance of plays and other stage works, and over fine arts and photographic exhibits, motion pictures, radio and television broadcasts, and sometimes even private correspondence for the purpose of preventing or limiting the dissemination of ideas and information deemed by such authorities to be undesirable or harmful.

Censorship may be imposed either before or after release of a given work. In the case of prior censorship, permission must be obtained before a book can be published, for example, or a play produced, whereas ex post facto censorship is exercised through the review of works that have already been published or otherwise released and through the restriction or prohibition of any work that violates the rules of censorship.

During the Middle Ages, censorship was exercised by the church authorities over theological and liturgical manuscripts in order to prevent heresies or other deviations from official church standards. The church issued book-banning decrees as well. In the 14th century, under Pope Urban VI, it was decreed that only those books could be used that were faithful copies of the originals and whose contents were not contrary to church dogma. In the early 15th century, Pope Martin V instituted a college of bishops that had control over the contents of books. Somewhat later, censorship functions were assumed by the secular state with respect to book copyists and the contents of books produced by them; such functions were usually exercised by the universities.

The invention of book printing stimulated the development of censorship. In 1471 it was decreed that books on religious subjects could be printed only with prior permission of the church authorities. In the mid-16th century the Catholic Church compiled a list of forbidden books; subsequently the list was repeatedly expanded. Beginning in the 16th century, censorship gradually passed into the hands of the secular authorities, becoming firmly established in all the Western European countries that had printing houses.

Under absolutist forms of government, censorship was one of the chief weapons used by the state and the church against ideologies that were hostile to the feudal system. Censorship bodies grew in number and were given greater responsibility over violations of the rules of censorship.

The French Revolution and the bourgeois revolutions elsewhere proclaimed freedom of expression and the abolition of censorship. The bourgeoisie itself, however, having gained political power, made extensive use of censorship for its own class purposes, thereby restricting the exercise of democratic freedoms by the proletariat and the workers progressive organizations. For a long time, workers publications in many countries were prohibited altogether.

Every bourgeois state today exercises ex post facto, or punitive, censorshipthat is, criminal proceedings are instituted in the case of publication of defamatory and slanderous information; punitive measures include fines, confiscation of printed issues, and bans or attachments against publication. The laws with respect to what may be published are so vague in formulation that they can be interpreted in a variety of ways. In the USA, for example, it is prohibited to abuse freedom of speech and freedom of the press; in Great Britain the government can prohibit the publication of certain news items on the grounds of national interest. According to Anglo-Saxon law, such censorship is not deemed contrary to freedom of speech and of the press.

The bourgeois states have no formal system of prior censorship; in many countries, howeverincluding the USA, France, and Great Britaina functioning system of governmental measures enables a stringent censorship to be effected in practice. In addition, opportunities to disseminate progressive publications are limited by the fact that new publishing organizations must be licensed and registered by the competent state agencies and must have large sums of money at their disposal in order to be able to operate. The very fact that the mass media, including newspapers and magazines, are owned by large monopolies determines the selection of material to be published and the weeding out of information that is unfavorable to the ruling class.

The censorship of motion pictures and school textbooks, which is systematically practiced in all the bourgeois states, is particularly stringent in the USA. In most of the bourgeois countries, the observance of censorship prohibitions is under the jurisdiction of the ministry or department of justice, the public prosecutors office, or the ministry of internal affairs.

REFERENCEIdeologicheskaia deiatelnost sovremennogo imperialisticheskogo gosudarstva. Moscow, 1972.In Russia. The earliest form of censorship in Russia, dating back to the 16th century, was religious censorship; its functions were assumed by the Synod in 1721. A decree of 1783, which allowed private individuals to establish printing houses, also introduced prior censorship: manuscripts could be printed only after being reviewed by the uprava blagochiniia (board of police). The outbreak of the French Revolution led to stricter censorship policies. In 1790, A. N. Radishchevs book A Journey From St. Petersburg to Moscow was destroyed; in 1792, N. I. Novikovs publishing house was closed down. A decree of 1796 instituted controls on the publication and importing of books into Russia and established censorship commissions in St. Petersburg, Moscow, and other cities.Censorship in the 19th century was regulated by special statutes. The first censorship statute, adopted in 1804, entrusted the supervision of publishing to the central board for school administration of the Ministry of Public Education. The statute prohibited the publication of works that were inimical to the Orthodox religion and to the autocratic order. A second statute, adopted in 1826 and known by its contemporaries as the iron statute, introduced a great number of petty restrictions that gave censors the right to ban any work at all. Under the statute of 1828, which was formally less restrictive, no new periodical could be published without permission of the emperor Nicholas I. The supervision of publishing was assumed by the central board for censorship under the Ministry of Public Education; local censorship commissions were subordinate to the central board. In practice the functions of censorship were exercised by the Third Section, to which censors had to report instances of freethinking works and their authors names. The works of A. S. Pushkin, M. Iu. Lermontov, and N. V. Gogol were subjected to severe censorship; N. A. Polevois journal Moskovskii telegraf was closed down in 1834, and N. I. Nadezhdins Teleskop in 1836.The period from 1848 to 1855 went down in the history of Russian literature as the age of terror in censorship. Frightened by the Revolution of 184849 in Western Europe, the tsarist regime stiffened its controls over periodicals and literary works, which it regarded as the chief vehicles of revolutionary ideas. A secret committee was established by order of Nicholas I on Apr. 2, 1848, to examine all publications that were already in print; anything that was deemed contrary to the governments views was reported to the tsar. (D. P. Buturlin headed the committee until 1849; N. N. Annenkov, until 1853; and M. A. Korf, until 1856.) Thus punitive censorship was added to the prior censorship system that was already in effect. On the basis of reports by the Buturlin Committee, M. E. Saltykov was deported to Viatka in 1848,1. S. Turgenev was arrested and exiled to Spasskoe-Lutovi-novo in 1852, and the Slavophiles were subjected to persecutions.The censorship terror reached its apogee after the trial of the Petrashevskii Circle. The Pocket Dictionary of Foreign Words, published by members of the circle, was destroyed. Special circulars were issued prohibiting the publication of research works on such subjects as folklore or the history of popular movements; the number of books, journals, and newspapers published in Russia was drastically reduced.After Russias defeat in the Crimean War of 185356 and the death of Nicholas I, the government was led to change its policy by the general quickening of social life, the extensive circulation of uncensored literature in manuscript form, and the establishment abroad of the Free Russian Printing House. The abolition of the Buturlin Committee on Dec. 6, 1855, marked the beginning of censorship reform. A set of temporary regulations on censorship and publishing, issued on Apr. 6, 1865, assigned censorship functions to a central administrative board for publishing; the board was under the Ministry of Internal Affairs, which also had jurisdiction over book trade matters, libraries, and printing houses. Prior censorship was no longer required for original works of a length of more than ten printers sheets, translated works of more than 20 printers sheets, periodicals published in the capital cities by permission of the minister of internal affairs, and works published by the academies and universities. Judicial liability was established for censorship violations; moreover, the confiscation of published material was to be effected by court order. The minister of internal affairs could issue warnings to journals and newspapers for harmful tendencies. After the third such warning the Senate could order the publication to be suspended for six months or be banned.The censorship reform of 1865 was one of the least consistent of the bourgeois reforms of the 1860s and 1870s. Even so, it was soon reduced to naught by various amendments. In 1868 the minister of internal affairs was given the right to prohibit the retail sale of periodicals. In 1872 the confiscation of published material was made subject to administrative order by the Committee of Ministers. In 1882 the right to prohibit the publication of periodicals was vested in a joint conference of the chief procurator of the Synod and the ministers of internal affairs, justice, and public education.The censors persecutions forced the closure of many newspapers and journalsfor example, of Sovremennik and Russkoe slovo in 1866, and of Otechestvennye zapiski in 1884. The press was not allowed to report on political trials, strikes, or peasants agitations. In 1895 the censors destroyed the collection Material for a Characterization of Our Economic Development, which contained V. I. Lenins article The Economic Content of Narodni-chestvo and the Criticism of It in Mr. Struves Book. Between 1865 and 1904, a total of 218 books was destroyed, 173 periodicals were given 282 warnings, 218 orders were issued prohibiting retail sales, and 27 publications were suspended. Between 1865 and 1901, ten different journals and 205 books were banned from public libraries and reading rooms; authors whose works were banned included N. G. Chernyshevskii, N. A. Dobroliubov, A. I. Herzen, D. I. Pisarev, L. N. Tolstoy, and N. S. Leskov.Under pressure of the revolutionary movement, the government issued temporary regulations on Nov. 24, 1905, and on Apr. 26, 1906, abolishing the system of prior censorship and again making authors and publishers responsible to the law courts. Nevertheless, the special security system providing for increased protection and emergency protection, which had been put into effect almost everywhere after the suppression of the December Armed Uprisings of 1905, gave broad scope to arbitrary administrative measures: between October 1905 and January 1907, 361 books were seized, 371 periodicals were closed, and 607 authors and editors were imprisoned or fined. Censorship was continuously used as a weapon of the tsarist regime in the latters struggle against the revolutionary movement and against democratic literature and journalism.The Constitution of the USSR, in accordance with the peoples interests and in order to strengthen and develop the socialist system, guarantees freedom of the press to all citizens. State control has been established in order to prevent the publication of certain news items in the public press and their dissemination through the mass medianamely, news items that reveal state secrets or that may be harmful to the interests of the working people.

REFERENCESSkabichevskii, A. M. Ocherki istorii russkoi tsenzury (17001863). St. Petersburg, 1892.Lemke, M. K. Epokha tsenzurnykh reform, 18591865 gg. St. Petersburg, 1904.Lemke, M. K. Ocherkipo istorii russkoi tsenzury i zhurnalistiki XIX st. St. Petersburg, 1904.Rozenberg, V., and V. Iakushkin. Russkaia pechat i tsenzura v ee proshlom i nastoiashchem. Moscow, 1905.Nikitenko, A. V. Dnevnik, vols. 13. Moscow, 195556.Feoktistov, E. M. Vospominaniia: Za kulisami politiki i literatury, 184818%. Leningrad, 1929.Berezhnoi, A. F. Tsarskaia tsenzura i borba bolshevikov za svobodu pechati (18951914). Leningrad, 1967.Baluev, B. P. Politicheskaia reaktsiia 80-kh godov XIX v. i russkaia zhurnalistika. Moscow, 1971.Svodnyi katalog russkoi nelegalnoi i zapreshchennoi pechati XIX v., parts 19. Moscow, 1971.

B. M. LAZAREVand B. IU. IVANOV

Go here to read the rest:

Government censorship | Article about Government …

Censorship – Definition, Examples, Cases – Legal Dictionary

The term censorship refers to the suppression, banning, or deletion of speech, writing, or images that are considered to be indecent, obscene, or otherwise objectionable. Censorship becomes a civil rights issue when a government or other entity with authority, suppresses ideas, or the expression of ideas, information, and self. In the U.S., censorship has been debated for decades, as some seek to protect the public from offensive materials, and others seek to protect the publics rights to free speech and expression. To explore this concept, consider the following censorship definition.

Noun

Origin

380 B.C. Greek Philosopher Plato

The word censorship is from the Latin censere, which is to give as ones opinion, to assess. In Roman times, censors were public officials who took census counts, as well as evaluating public principles and moralities. Societies throughout history have taken on the belief that the government is responsible for shaping the characters of individuals, many engaging in censorship to that end.

In his text The Republic, ancient Greek philosopher Plato makes a systematic case for the need for censorship in the arts. Information in the ancient Chinese society was tightly controlled, a practice that persists in some form today. Finally, many churches, including the Roman Catholic Church, have historically banned literature felt to be contrary to the teachings of the church.

Many of Americas laws have their origins in English law. In the 1700s, both countries made it their business to censor speech and writings concerning sedition, which are actions promoting the overthrowing of the government, and blasphemy, which is sacrilege or irreverence toward God. The idea that obscenity should be censored didnt gain serious favor until the mid-1800s. The courts in both countries, throughout history, have worked to suppress speech, writings, and images on these issues.

As time went on, contention arose over just what should be considered obscene. Early English law defined obscenity as anything that tended to deprave and corrupt those whose minds are open to such immoral influences, and anything that might suggest to the minds of the young of either sex, and even to persons of more advanced years, thoughts of a most impure and libidinous character. This essentially meant anything that might lead one to have impure thoughts. This definition carried over into early American law as well.

However, that definition was vague enough to raise more questions than it answered in many circumstances. These included:

Censorship in America took a turn in 1957, when the U.S. Supreme Court declared that adults cannot be reduced to reading only what is fit for children, ruling that it must be considered whether the work was originally meant for children or adults. Still, the Court acknowledged that works that are utterly without redeeming social importance can be censored or banned. This left another vague standard for the courts to deal with.

Censorship in America is most commonly a question in the entertainment industry, which is widely influential on the young and old alike. Public entertainment in the form of movies, television, music, and electronic gaming are considered to have a substantial effect on public interest. Because of this, it is subject to certain governmental regulations.

The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution prohibits suppression of an individuals right to free speech, stating Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press This is a principle held dear by those protesting censorship in any form. In the U.S., censorship of obscene materials in entertainment is allowed, in order to protect children from pornography and other offensive things. The problem with government sanctioned censorship is the risk of violating the civil rights of either those producing the materials, or those wishing to view them.

The issue of censorship in the film industry has, at times, been quite contentious. In an effort to avoid the censorship issue, while striving to protect children and conform to federal laws, the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) instituted a self-regulating, voluntary rating system in 1968. In the 1990s, the MPAA updated its rating system, making it easier for parents to determine what is appropriate for their children, based on the childrens ages.

The MPAA rating system has a number of ratings:

Rather than censoring movies or their content by exclusion of content, MCAA ratings are assigned by a board of people who view the movies, who consider such factors as violence, sex, drug use, and language when assigning ratings. The board strives to assign a rating that a majority of parents in the U.S. would give, considering their needs to protect their children.

An X rating was part of the MCAAs original rating system, and signified that no one under the age of 16 would be allowed, regardless of parental accompaniment. The X rating was replaced by the NC-17 rating in 1990.

Internet censorship refers to the suppression of information that can be published to, or viewed on, the internet. While many people enjoy unfettered access to the broad spectrum of information racing across the information highway, others are denied access, or allowed access only to government approved information. Rationales for internet censorship range from a desire to protect children from content that is offensive or inappropriate, to a governments objective to control its peoples access to world news, opinions, and other information.

In the United States, the First Amendment affords the people some protection of their right to freely access the internet, and of the things they post to the web. Because of this, there is very little government-mandated filtering of information that originates in the U.S. The issue of censorship of certain content, especially content that may further terrorism, is constantly debated at the federal government level.

As an example of censorship, the following countries are known for censoring their peoples internet content:

In the mid-1960s, Sam Ginsberg, who owned Sams Stationery and Luncheonette on Long Island, was charged with selling girlie magazines to a 16-year old boy, which was in violation of New York state law. Ginsberg was tried in the Nassau County District Court, without a jury, and found guilty. The judge found that the magazines contained pictures which, by failing to cover the female buttocks and breasts with an opaque covering, were harmful to minors. He stated that the photos appealed to the prurient, shameful or morbid interest of minors, and that the images were patently offensive to standards held by the adult community regarding what was suitable for minors.

Ginsberg was denied the right to appeal his convictions to the New York Court of Appeals, at which time he took his case to the U.S. Supreme Court, on the basis that the state of New York had no authority to define two separate classes of people (minors and adults), with respect to what is harmful. In addition, Ginsberg argued that it was easy to mistake a young persons age, and the law makes no requirement for how much effort a shop owner must put into determining age before selling magazines intended for adult viewing. The Court did not agree, holding that Ginsberg might be acquitted on the grounds of an honest mistake, only if he had made a reasonable bonafide attempt to ascertain the true age of such a minor. The conviction was upheld.

The rest is here:

Censorship – Definition, Examples, Cases – Legal Dictionary

American Censorship – The Government’s Act of Altering Media

Lower back pain has become widely common. To some extent, this is connected with our sedentary lifestyles. Lack of exercise, especially when combined with a desk job, which requires you to stay put at an office for hours, will inevitably cause back pain. However, there are other factors that play a role in the equation. For example, your position impacts the way in which your back feels. And most notably your office chair is more important than it may seem at first glance.

The best office chairs can actually offer relief, promoting healthy blood flow and adjusting the body in the correct position. So, how do you choose an office chair if youre dealing with lower back pain? Well, our guide will introduce you to a range of top products on the market. Aside from that, we will outline the main considerations that go into this lengthy shopping process.

Herman Miller Classic Aeron Chair Loaded Posture Fit

PRICE$$$$

Dimensions : 26 x 28 x 24

Weight : 48 pounds

Features : Tension Control / Rear tilt Lock/ Forward tilt/ Lumbar support

Herman Miller Embody Chair

PRICE$$$$$

Dimensions : 28 x 27 x 38.2

Weight : 51 pounds

Features : Tilt limiter / Adjustable seat depth / Fully adjustable arms

Herman Miller Sayl Task Chair

PRICE$$$$

Dimensions : 26 x 24.5 x 37

Weight : 38 pounds

Features : Suspension back / 93 percent recyclable

Flash Furniture Mid-Back Black Mesh Swivel Task Chair

PRICE$

Dimensions : 34.4 x 26.2 x 25

Weight : 11.25 pounds

Features : Tilt Lock Mechanism / Tilt Tension Adjustment Knob

Our first recommendation is this chair manufactured by Herman Miller. The reason why this is listed as one of the best office chairs for a back pain is its unique design. It is created specifically to support a healthy posture even if you often find yourself shifting positions throughout the day. We all know that staying put for hours can be quite uncomfortable.

At the same time, this chair is suitable for people of various sizes. Expressly, it conforms after your bodys shape, while distributing the weight evenly.

Furthermore, another unique characteristic is the presence of elliptical weaving threads. More specifically, the Classic Aeron Chair incorporates a patented tilt, which is referred to as the Kinemat kilt. This aims at mimicking the bodys pivot points.

The contoured back diminishes the pressure exercised on your back, ensuring your comfort. The padded arms are adjustable, meaning that you can customize them as you find best.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

Our list continues with another product manufactured by the renowned Herman Miller. The Embody Chair distinguishes itself through its unique design, which is great, particularly in regard to adjustability and customization.

That is to say, you benefit from complete adjustability, which is great news if youre struggling with back pain. This includes the position of your armrests and the actual seat position. However, our favorite thing about it is that each time you sit in the chair, the backrest automatically adjusts to your spine.

This is thanks to the dynamic matrix of pixels, as Herman Miller puts it. That is to say, whenever you change your position, the chair adjusts right away.

What is more, the item includes a handy fine-tuning knob designated for the headrest. Therefore, you can customize it depending on your preferences.

Nevertheless, a potential drawback could be that the chair doesnt have a headrest. At the same time, you dont have the alternative of adding a headrest, if you consider it necessary for your comfort.

What is more, if you prefer sitting close to your desk, you might find the lack of back-and-forth adjustability frustrating. Overall, though, this is a good investment.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

This is another product manufactured by Herman Miller. It has reached our list for many reasons. Most importantly, though, it is unbelievably comfortable; even if it might not seem like it at first glance.

Of course, the innovative, modern design is a major draw. This would make it the perfect addition to a modern office facility. Expressly, the concept behind the creation of the chair is identical to the one used for designing the Golden Gate Bridge.

The backbone of the chair represents a unique characteristic namely a Y tower. This offers optimal back support. Another feature that is exclusive to this chair is represented by the ArcSpan on the chairs back.

The purpose of the elastomer strands is to help you preserve a correct posture throughout the day. Nonetheless, in some areas, the strands remain flexible; therefore, enabling you to move freely.

Plus, you might be pleased to find out that this is an environmentally friendly item no less than 93 percent of the chairs construction is recyclable. And while there are contradicting opinions concerning its comfort level, some people say that it is excellent for back pain.

Hence, we could say that this is a pretty subjective topic it depends on your preferences and needs, for the most part.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

If your budget is limited, then you might find this chair a good alternative. The price is definitely appealing, but its reassuring to know that it offers optimal lumbar support. This should be a priority for each person that works at a desk.

Even if the design is rather simplistic, it does the trick. However, its worth mentioning that you dont have the option of adjusting the lumbar support. Still, weve found it to work quite well; therefore, you might not even feel the need to customize it.

The mesh back provides decent support, while being comfortable. As a matter of fact, weve found it to be surprisingly comfortable, even during prolonged periods of use. Thats simply because it conforms to your sitting position.

Concurrently, it offers decent ventilation.

Of course, you still have the standard ways of adjusting the chair were referring to tilt and height. Still, its limitations shouldnt be overlooked. In fact, taller people might consider this a major inconvenience, as it could jeopardize their comfort.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

Ergohuman High Back Swivel Chair with Headrest

PRICE$$$$

Dimensions : 26 x 27.5 x 51

Weight : 64 pounds

Features : 3 position tilt-lock / Tilt tension control / Tilt lock

The Steelcase Leap Chair

PRICE$$$

Dimensions : 24.8 x 27 x 43.5

Weight : 48 pounds

Features : LiveBack technology / 94% RECYCLABLE / Height-adjustable lumbar support

AmazonBasics Mid-Back Mesh Chair

PRICE$

Dimensions : 25.2 x 24 x 40.4

Weight : 23.1 pounds

Features : Contoured mesh back / Pneumatic seat-height adjustment

Modway Articulate Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair

PRICE$$

Dimensions : 27.5 x 26 x 41.5

Weight : 36 pounds

Features : Breathable mesh back, passive lumbar support

This chair has been designed with a core purpose in mind ergonomics. More specifically, you can customize it almost completely, depending on your preferences.

In fact, each individual component can be customized the headrest, the backrest, the seat depth, chair height, and the armrests, in an attempt to enjoy optimal comfort.

Thanks to the synchro-tilt mechanism, as well as the seat depth adjustment, your back will get the support it needs whether youre reclining or sitting upright.

Moving on, the mesh fabric is quite comfortable. Nevertheless, as a potential drawback, the material is quite sticky, which can be frustrating.

At the same time, you might find it a bit inconvenient that the armrests dont lock in place. Additionally, they have the tendency of moving quite easily. Overall, in regard to the construction of the chair, we can say that it is sturdy and durable.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

Right now, this is one of the best-selling chairs on the market. The reason why we have chosen to include it on our list is its optimal lumbar support. What makes it so great is the LiveBack technology.

Basically, the LiveBack technology features an adjustable tension knob. You use it in order to increase or decrease the firmness of the curve of the backrest.

Plus, there is also a height-adjustable lumbar support. This moves throughout the lower back. That is to say, you should expect to experience noteworthy pain relief in this respect.

This is what really makes a difference in terms of back support. Thanks to the natural glide system, the seat glides forward. Thus, you can effortlessly recline without leaving your reach zone, while remaining focused on your work.

Expressly, you can embrace different postures, to diminish the static load exercised on the spine. Additionally, thanks to the lower back firmness control, you can set the level of firmness to remain consistent. This will contribute to maintaining the lower spines natural curve.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

This is another optimal budget option for an office chair suitable for back pain. In truth, the price is surprisingly affordable for what this item has to offer: that is great comfort and support.

At the same time, we like that the chair is entirely adjustable. Specifically, thanks to the simple pneumatic controls, you can either lower or raise the seat. Moreover, if you wish, you may even rock back in the chair. Due to its adjustability, you can embrace a comfortable, correct seating position, which is fundamental when you have a bad back.

Moving on, also in regard to the design of the chair, the back is covered in mesh. If you have a look at the way in which its constructed, youll notice that it is designed in order to facilitate lumbar support which is pretty great, especially for the price.

Even if other chairs on our list might be infinitely more comfortable, we think that the price tag makes up for it.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

This is another item that is worthy of your attention. In other words, it provides excellent value, considering the features it comes with. Firstly, it is described as an ergonomic office chair, offering adequate lumbar support.

At the same time, in order to maximize your comfort, the chair is generously padded. We could say that it is constructed with daily use in mind; thats because the chair feels sturdy and durable. To that end, it is suitable for people weighing up to 331 lbs.

Furthermore, you can choose from the incline or recline function and lock it in place, whenever you feel like it, of course.

As noted by some reviewers struggling with back problems, thanks to this chair, the severity of the pain is alleviated.

On the other hand, there have been some complaints about the height of the armrests. Truthfully, the armrests locked at the lowest position are still too high. This could be an inconvenience, in terms of comfort. So, keep this in mind if you are looking to get this chair.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

Steelcase Leap Desk Chair with Headrest

PRICE$$$$$

Dimensions : 25 x 27 x 52.5

Weight : 65 pounds

Features : Patented LiveTechnology / Highly Adjustable arms

DXRacer Classic Series Big and Tall Chair

PRICE$$$

Dimensions : 24 x 27 x 51

Weight : 66 pounds

Features : Additional lumbar support cushion

Read this article:

American Censorship – The Government’s Act of Altering Media

Censorship – Wikipedia

The practice of suppressing information

Censorship is the suppression of speech, public communication, or other information, on the basis that such material is considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or “inconvenient” as determined by a government[1] or private institution,[2] for example, corporate censorship.

Governments[1] and private organizations may engage in censorship. Other groups or institutions may propose and petition for censorship.[2] When an individual such as an author or other creator engages in censorship of their own works or speech, it is referred to as self-censorship. It occurs in a variety of different media, including speech, books, music, films, and other arts, the press, radio, television, and the Internet for a variety of claimed reasons including national security, to control obscenity, child pornography, and hate speech, to protect children or other vulnerable groups, to promote or restrict political or religious views, and to prevent slander and libel.

Direct censorship may or may not be legal, depending on the type, location, and content. Many countries provide strong protections against censorship by law, but none of these protections are absolute and frequently a claim of necessity to balance conflicting rights is made, in order to determine what could and could not be censored. There are no laws against self-censorship.

In 399 BC, Greek philosopher, Socrates, defied attempts by the Greek state to censor his philosophical teachings and was sentenced to death by drinking a poison, hemlock. Socrates’ student, Plato, is said to have advocated censorship in his essay on The Republic, which opposed the existence of democracy. In contrast to Plato, Greek playwright Euripides (480406BC) defended the true liberty of freeborn men, including the right to speak freely. In 1766, Sweden became the first country to abolish censorship by law.[4]

The rationale for censorship is different for various types of information censored:

Strict censorship existed in the Eastern Bloc.[11] Throughout the bloc, the various ministries of culture held a tight rein on their writers.[12] Cultural products there reflected the propaganda needs of the state.[12] Party-approved censors exercised strict control in the early years.[13] In the Stalinist period, even the weather forecasts were changed if they suggested that the sun might not shine on May Day.[13] Under Nicolae Ceauescu 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.[13]

Independent journalism did not exist in the Soviet Union until Mikhail Gorbachev became its leader; all reporting was directed by the Communist Party or related organizations. Pravda, 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, illegal self-published books and magazines. Possession of even a single samizdat manuscript such as a book by Andrei Sinyavsky was a serious crime which might involve a visit from the KGB. Another outlet for works which did not find favor with the authorities was publishing abroad.

The People’s Republic of China employs sophisticated censorship mechanisms, referred to as the Golden Shield Project, to monitor the internet. Popular search engines such as Baidu also remove politically sensitive search results.[14][15][16]

Iraq under Baathist Saddam Hussein had much the same techniques of press censorship as did Romania under Nicolae Ceauescu but with greater potential violence.[citation needed]

Cuban media used to be operated under the supervision of the Communist Party’s Department of Revolutionary Orientation, which “develops and coordinates propaganda strategies”.[17] Connection to the Internet is restricted and censored.[18]

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 was imprisoned and later was forced to flee. His book Open Veins of Latin America was banned by the right-wing military government, not only in Uruguay, but also in Chile and Argentina.[19]

In the United States, censorship occurs through books, film festivals, politics, and public schools.[20] See banned books for more information. Additionally, critics of campaign finance reform in the United States say this reform imposes widespread restrictions on political speech.[21][22]

In the Republic of Singapore, Section 33 of the Films Act originally banned the making, distribution and exhibition of “party political films”, at pain of a fine not exceeding $100,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years. The Act further defines a “party political film” as any film or video

In 2001, the short documentary called A Vision of Persistence on opposition politician J. B. Jeyaretnam was also banned for being a “party political film”. The makers of the documentary, all lecturers at the Ngee Ann Polytechnic, later submitted written apologies and withdrew the documentary from being screened at the 2001 Singapore International Film Festival in April, having been told they could be charged in court. Another short documentary called Singapore Rebel by Martyn See, which documented Singapore Democratic Party leader Dr Chee Soon Juan’s acts of civil disobedience, was banned from the 2005 Singapore International Film Festival on the same grounds and See is being investigated for possible violations of the Films Act.

This law, however, is often disregarded when such political films are made supporting the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP). Channel NewsAsia’s five-part documentary series on Singapore’s PAP ministers in 2005, for example, was not considered a party political film.

Exceptions are also made when political films are made concerning political parties of other nations. Films such as Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 911 are thus allowed to screen regardless of the law.

Since March 2009, the Films Act has been amended to allow party political films as long as they were deemed factual and objective by a consultative committee. Some months later, this committee lifted the ban on Singapore Rebel.

Online access to all language versions of Wikipedia was blocked in Turkey on 29 April 2017 by Erdoan’s government.[23]

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 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 catchphrase “Loose lips sink ships” was used as a common justification to exercise official wartime censorship and encourage individual restraint when sharing potentially sensitive information.

An example of “sanitization” policies comes from the USSR under Joseph Stalin, 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 and totalitarianism.

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.[24][25]

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. Examples include the Galileo affair, Edict of Compigne, the Index Librorum Prohibitorum (list of prohibited books) and the condemnation of Salman Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses by Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Images of the Islamic figure Muhammad are also regularly censored. In some secular countries, this is sometimes done to prevent hurting religious sentiments.[26]

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 is extremely controversial, as in the case of The Holocaust (or Holocaust denial), Bombing of Dresden, the Nanking Massacre as found with Japanese history textbook controversies, the Armenian Genocide, the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, and the Winter Soldier Investigation of the Vietnam War.

In the context of secondary school education, the way facts and history 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 which is the version used by most school classes[27] contained approximately 75 separate edits, omissions, and changes from the original Bradbury manuscript.

In February 2006 a National Geographic cover was censored by the Nashravaran Journalistic Institute. The offending cover was about the subject of love and a picture of an embracing couple was hidden beneath a white sticker.[28][28]

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.[29] Picture approval is the right given to an individual to choose which photos will be published and which will not. Robert Redford is well known for insisting upon picture approval.[30] 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.[citation needed]

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.

Self-censorship is the act of censoring or classifying one’s own blog, book, film, or other forms of media. This is done out of fear of, or deference to, the sensibilities or preferences (actual or perceived) of others and without overt pressure from any specific party or institution of authority. Self-censorship is often practiced by film producers, film directors, publishers, news anchors, journalists, musicians, and other kinds of authors including individuals who use social media.[32]

According to a Pew Research Center and the Columbia Journalism Review survey, “About one-quarter of the local and national journalists say they have purposely avoided newsworthy stories, while nearly as many acknowledge they have softened the tone of stories to benefit the interests of their news organizations. Fully four-in-ten (41%) admit they have engaged in either or both of these practices.”[33]

Threats to media freedom have shown a significant increase in Europe in recent years, according to a study published in April 2017 by the Council of Europe.This results in a fear of physical or psychological violence, and the ultimate result is self-censorship by journalists.[34]

Book censorship can be enacted at the national or sub-national level, and can carry legal penalties for their infraction. Books may also be challenged at a local, community level. As a result, books can be removed from schools or libraries, although these bans do not extend outside of that area.

Aside from the usual justifications of pornography and obscenity, some films are censored due to changing racial attitudes or political correctness in order to avoid ethnic stereotyping and/or ethnic offense despite its historical or artistic value. One example is the still withdrawn “Censored Eleven” series of animated cartoons, which may have been innocent then, but are “incorrect” now.

Film censorship is carried out by various countries to differing degrees. For example, only 34 foreign films a year are approved for official distribution in China’s strictly controlled film market.[35]

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.[36]

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 in order to make attempts of defection more difficult. Censorship of maps is also applied by Google Maps, where certain areas are grayed out or blacked or areas are purposely left outdated with old imagery.[37]

Under subsection 48(3) and (4) of the Penang Islamic Religious Administration Enactment 2004, non-Muslims in Malaysia are penalized for using the following words, or to write or publish them, in any form, version or translation in any language or for use in any publicity material in any medium:”Allah”, “Firman Allah”, “Ulama”, “Hadith”, “Ibadah”, “Kaabah”, “Qadhi'”, “Illahi”, “Wahyu”, “Mubaligh”, “Syariah”, “Qiblat”, “Haji”, “Mufti”, “Rasul”, “Iman”, “Dakwah”, “Wali”, “Fatwa”, “Imam”, “Nabi”, “Sheikh”, “Khutbah”, “Tabligh”, “Akhirat”, “Azan”, “Al Quran”, “As Sunnah”, “Auliya'”, “Karamah”, “False Moon God”, “Syahadah”, “Baitullah”, “Musolla”, “Zakat Fitrah”, “Hajjah”, “Taqwa” and “Soleh”.[38][39][40]

Publishers of the Spanish reference dictionary Real Acdemia Espaola received petitions to censor the entries “Jewishness”, “Gypsiness”, “black work” and “weak sex”, claiming that they are either offensive or non-PC.[41]

One elementary school’s obscenity filter changed every reference to the word “tit” to “breast,” so when a child typed “U.S. Constitution” into the school computer, it changed it to Consbreastution.[42]

British photographer and visual artist Graham Ovenden’s photos and paintings were ordered to be destroyed by a London’s magistrate court in 2015 for being “indecent”[43] and their copies had been removed from the online Tate gallery.[44]

A 1980 Israeli law forbade banned artwork composed of the four colours of the Palestinian flag,[45] and Palestinians were arrested for displaying such artwork or even for carrying sliced melons with the same pattern.[46][47][48]

Internet censorship is control or suppression of the publishing or accessing of 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. Individuals and organizations may engage in self-censorship 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 websites 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.[54]

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 and data havens (such as Freenet) 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. Nevertheless, blocking remains an effective means of limiting access to sensitive information for most users when censors, such as those in China, are able to devote significant resources to building and maintaining a comprehensive censorship system.[54]

Views about the feasibility and effectiveness of Internet censorship have evolved in parallel with the development of the Internet and censorship technologies:

A BBC World Service poll of 27,973 adults in 26 countries, including 14,306 Internet users,[58] was conducted between 30 November 2009 and 7 February 2010. The head of the polling organization felt, overall, that the poll showed that:

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).[60]

The rising usages of social media in many nations has led to the emergence of citizens organizing protests through social media, sometimes called “Twitter Revolutions”. The most notable of these social media led protests were parts Arab Spring uprisings, starting in 2010. In response to the use of social media in these protests, the Tunisian government began a hack of Tunisian citizens’ Facebook accounts, and reports arose of accounts being deleted.[61]

Automated systems can be used to censor social media posts, and therefore limit what citizens can say online. This most notably occurs in China, where social media posts are automatically censored depending on content. In 2013, Harvard political science professor Gary King led a study to determine what caused social media posts to be censored and found that posts mentioning the government were not more or less likely to be deleted if they were supportive or critical of the government. Posts mentioning collective action were more likely to be deleted than those that had not mentioned collective action.[62] Currently, social media censorship appears primarily as a way to restrict Internet users’ ability to organize protests. For the Chinese government, seeing citizens unhappy with local governance is beneficial as state and national leaders can replace unpopular officials. King and his researchers were able to predict when certain officials would be removed based on the number of unfavorable social media posts.[63]

Research has proved that criticism is tolerable on social media sites, therefore it is not censored unless it has a higher chance of collective action. It isn’t important whether the criticism is supportive or unsupportive of the states’ leaders, the main priority of censoring certain social media posts is to make sure that no big actions are being made due to something that was said on the internet. Posts that challenge the Party’s political leading role in the Chinese government are more likely to be censored due to the challenges it poses to the Chinese Communist Party.[64]

Since the early 1980s, advocates of video games have emphasized their use as an expressive medium, arguing for their protection under the laws governing freedom of speech and also as an educational tool. Detractors argue that video games are harmful and therefore should be subject to legislative oversight and restrictions. Many video games have certain elements removed or edited due to regional rating standards.[65][66]For example, in the Japanese and PAL Versions of No More Heroes, blood splatter and gore is removed from the gameplay. Decapitation scenes are implied, but not shown. Scenes of missing body parts after having been cut off, are replaced with the same scene, but showing the body parts fully intact.[67]

Surveillance and censorship are different. Surveillance can be performed without censorship, but it is harder to engage in censorship without some form of surveillance.[68] And even when surveillance does not lead directly to censorship, the widespread knowledge or belief that a person, their computer, or their use of the Internet is under surveillance can lead to self-censorship.[69]

Protection of sources is no longer just a matter of journalistic ethics; it increasingly also depends on the journalist’s computer skills and all journalists should equip themselves with a “digital survival kit” if they are exchanging sensitive information online or storing it on a computer or mobile phone.[70][71] And individuals associated with high-profile rights organizations, dissident, protest, or reform groups are urged to take extra precautions to protect their online identities.[72]

The former Soviet Union maintained a particularly extensive program of state-imposed censorship. The main organ for official censorship in the Soviet Union was the Chief Agency for Protection of Military and State Secrets generally known as the Glavlit, its Russian acronym. The Glavlit handled censorship matters arising from domestic writings of just about any kindeven 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 Glavlit’s control. All press agencies and radio and television stations had Glavlit representatives on their editorial staffs.[citation needed]

Sometimes, public knowledge of the existence of a specific document is subtly suppressed, a situation resembling censorship. The authorities taking such action will justify it by declaring the work to be “subversive” or “inconvenient”. An example is Michel Foucault’s 1978 text Sexual Morality and the Law (later republished as The Danger of Child Sexuality), originally published as La loi de la pudeur [literally, “the law of decency”]. This work defends the decriminalization of statutory rape and the abolition of age of consent laws.[citation needed]

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 (private publishing).[73]

Censorship has been criticized throughout history for being unfair and hindering progress. In a 1997 essay on Internet censorship, social commentator Michael Landier claims that censorship is counterproductive as it prevents the censored topic from being discussed. Landier expands his argument by claiming that those who impose censorship must consider what they censor to be true, as individuals believing themselves to be correct would welcome the opportunity to disprove those with opposing views.[74]

Censorship is often used to impose moral values on society, as in the censorship of material considered obscene. English novelist E. M. Forster was a staunch opponent of censoring material on the grounds that it was obscene or immoral, raising the issue of moral subjectivity and the constant changing of moral values. When the novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover was put on trial in 1960, Forster wrote:[75]

Lady Chatterley’s Lover is a literary work of importance…I do not think that it could be held obscene, but am in a difficulty here, for the reason that I have never been able to follow the legal definition of obscenity. The law tells me that obscenity may deprave and corrupt, but as far as I know, it offers no definition of depravity or corruption.

Censorship by country collects information on censorship, internet censorship, press freedom, freedom of speech, and human rights 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.

Related articles

Freedoms

Articles related to censorship

Original post:

Censorship – Wikipedia

American Censorship – The Government’s Act of Altering Media

Lower back pain has become widely common. To some extent, this is connected with our sedentary lifestyles. Lack of exercise, especially when combined with a desk job, which requires you to stay put at an office for hours, will inevitably cause back pain. However, there are other factors that play a role in the equation. For example, your position impacts the way in which your back feels. And most notably your office chair is more important than it may seem at first glance.

The best office chairs can actually offer relief, promoting healthy blood flow and adjusting the body in the correct position. So, how do you choose an office chair if youre dealing with lower back pain? Well, our guide will introduce you to a range of top products on the market. Aside from that, we will outline the main considerations that go into this lengthy shopping process.

Herman Miller Classic Aeron Chair Loaded Posture Fit

PRICE$$$$

Dimensions : 26 x 28 x 24

Weight : 48 pounds

Features : Tension Control / Rear tilt Lock/ Forward tilt/ Lumbar support

Herman Miller Embody Chair

PRICE$$$$$

Dimensions : 28 x 27 x 38.2

Weight : 51 pounds

Features : Tilt limiter / Adjustable seat depth / Fully adjustable arms

Herman Miller Sayl Task Chair

PRICE$$$$

Dimensions : 26 x 24.5 x 37

Weight : 38 pounds

Features : Suspension back / 93 percent recyclable

Flash Furniture Mid-Back Black Mesh Swivel Task Chair

PRICE$

Dimensions : 34.4 x 26.2 x 25

Weight : 11.25 pounds

Features : Tilt Lock Mechanism / Tilt Tension Adjustment Knob

Our first recommendation is this chair manufactured by Herman Miller. The reason why this is listed as one of the best office chairs for a back pain is its unique design. It is created specifically to support a healthy posture even if you often find yourself shifting positions throughout the day. We all know that staying put for hours can be quite uncomfortable.

At the same time, this chair is suitable for people of various sizes. Expressly, it conforms after your bodys shape, while distributing the weight evenly.

Furthermore, another unique characteristic is the presence of elliptical weaving threads. More specifically, the Classic Aeron Chair incorporates a patented tilt, which is referred to as the Kinemat kilt. This aims at mimicking the bodys pivot points.

The contoured back diminishes the pressure exercised on your back, ensuring your comfort. The padded arms are adjustable, meaning that you can customize them as you find best.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

Our list continues with another product manufactured by the renowned Herman Miller. The Embody Chair distinguishes itself through its unique design, which is great, particularly in regard to adjustability and customization.

That is to say, you benefit from complete adjustability, which is great news if youre struggling with back pain. This includes the position of your armrests and the actual seat position. However, our favorite thing about it is that each time you sit in the chair, the backrest automatically adjusts to your spine.

This is thanks to the dynamic matrix of pixels, as Herman Miller puts it. That is to say, whenever you change your position, the chair adjusts right away.

What is more, the item includes a handy fine-tuning knob designated for the headrest. Therefore, you can customize it depending on your preferences.

Nevertheless, a potential drawback could be that the chair doesnt have a headrest. At the same time, you dont have the alternative of adding a headrest, if you consider it necessary for your comfort.

What is more, if you prefer sitting close to your desk, you might find the lack of back-and-forth adjustability frustrating. Overall, though, this is a good investment.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

This is another product manufactured by Herman Miller. It has reached our list for many reasons. Most importantly, though, it is unbelievably comfortable; even if it might not seem like it at first glance.

Of course, the innovative, modern design is a major draw. This would make it the perfect addition to a modern office facility. Expressly, the concept behind the creation of the chair is identical to the one used for designing the Golden Gate Bridge.

The backbone of the chair represents a unique characteristic namely a Y tower. This offers optimal back support. Another feature that is exclusive to this chair is represented by the ArcSpan on the chairs back.

The purpose of the elastomer strands is to help you preserve a correct posture throughout the day. Nonetheless, in some areas, the strands remain flexible; therefore, enabling you to move freely.

Plus, you might be pleased to find out that this is an environmentally friendly item no less than 93 percent of the chairs construction is recyclable. And while there are contradicting opinions concerning its comfort level, some people say that it is excellent for back pain.

Hence, we could say that this is a pretty subjective topic it depends on your preferences and needs, for the most part.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

If your budget is limited, then you might find this chair a good alternative. The price is definitely appealing, but its reassuring to know that it offers optimal lumbar support. This should be a priority for each person that works at a desk.

Even if the design is rather simplistic, it does the trick. However, its worth mentioning that you dont have the option of adjusting the lumbar support. Still, weve found it to work quite well; therefore, you might not even feel the need to customize it.

The mesh back provides decent support, while being comfortable. As a matter of fact, weve found it to be surprisingly comfortable, even during prolonged periods of use. Thats simply because it conforms to your sitting position.

Concurrently, it offers decent ventilation.

Of course, you still have the standard ways of adjusting the chair were referring to tilt and height. Still, its limitations shouldnt be overlooked. In fact, taller people might consider this a major inconvenience, as it could jeopardize their comfort.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

Ergohuman High Back Swivel Chair with Headrest

PRICE$$$$

Dimensions : 26 x 27.5 x 51

Weight : 64 pounds

Features : 3 position tilt-lock / Tilt tension control / Tilt lock

The Steelcase Leap Chair

PRICE$$$

Dimensions : 24.8 x 27 x 43.5

Weight : 48 pounds

Features : LiveBack technology / 94% RECYCLABLE / Height-adjustable lumbar support

AmazonBasics Mid-Back Mesh Chair

PRICE$

Dimensions : 25.2 x 24 x 40.4

Weight : 23.1 pounds

Features : Contoured mesh back / Pneumatic seat-height adjustment

Modway Articulate Ergonomic Mesh Office Chair

PRICE$$

Dimensions : 27.5 x 26 x 41.5

Weight : 36 pounds

Features : Breathable mesh back, passive lumbar support

This chair has been designed with a core purpose in mind ergonomics. More specifically, you can customize it almost completely, depending on your preferences.

In fact, each individual component can be customized the headrest, the backrest, the seat depth, chair height, and the armrests, in an attempt to enjoy optimal comfort.

Thanks to the synchro-tilt mechanism, as well as the seat depth adjustment, your back will get the support it needs whether youre reclining or sitting upright.

Moving on, the mesh fabric is quite comfortable. Nevertheless, as a potential drawback, the material is quite sticky, which can be frustrating.

At the same time, you might find it a bit inconvenient that the armrests dont lock in place. Additionally, they have the tendency of moving quite easily. Overall, in regard to the construction of the chair, we can say that it is sturdy and durable.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

Right now, this is one of the best-selling chairs on the market. The reason why we have chosen to include it on our list is its optimal lumbar support. What makes it so great is the LiveBack technology.

Basically, the LiveBack technology features an adjustable tension knob. You use it in order to increase or decrease the firmness of the curve of the backrest.

Plus, there is also a height-adjustable lumbar support. This moves throughout the lower back. That is to say, you should expect to experience noteworthy pain relief in this respect.

This is what really makes a difference in terms of back support. Thanks to the natural glide system, the seat glides forward. Thus, you can effortlessly recline without leaving your reach zone, while remaining focused on your work.

Expressly, you can embrace different postures, to diminish the static load exercised on the spine. Additionally, thanks to the lower back firmness control, you can set the level of firmness to remain consistent. This will contribute to maintaining the lower spines natural curve.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

This is another optimal budget option for an office chair suitable for back pain. In truth, the price is surprisingly affordable for what this item has to offer: that is great comfort and support.

At the same time, we like that the chair is entirely adjustable. Specifically, thanks to the simple pneumatic controls, you can either lower or raise the seat. Moreover, if you wish, you may even rock back in the chair. Due to its adjustability, you can embrace a comfortable, correct seating position, which is fundamental when you have a bad back.

Moving on, also in regard to the design of the chair, the back is covered in mesh. If you have a look at the way in which its constructed, youll notice that it is designed in order to facilitate lumbar support which is pretty great, especially for the price.

Even if other chairs on our list might be infinitely more comfortable, we think that the price tag makes up for it.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

This is another item that is worthy of your attention. In other words, it provides excellent value, considering the features it comes with. Firstly, it is described as an ergonomic office chair, offering adequate lumbar support.

At the same time, in order to maximize your comfort, the chair is generously padded. We could say that it is constructed with daily use in mind; thats because the chair feels sturdy and durable. To that end, it is suitable for people weighing up to 331 lbs.

Furthermore, you can choose from the incline or recline function and lock it in place, whenever you feel like it, of course.

As noted by some reviewers struggling with back problems, thanks to this chair, the severity of the pain is alleviated.

On the other hand, there have been some complaints about the height of the armrests. Truthfully, the armrests locked at the lowest position are still too high. This could be an inconvenience, in terms of comfort. So, keep this in mind if you are looking to get this chair.

Check The Latest Price on Amazon!

Steelcase Leap Desk Chair with Headrest

PRICE$$$$$

Dimensions : 25 x 27 x 52.5

Weight : 65 pounds

Features : Patented LiveTechnology / Highly Adjustable arms

DXRacer Classic Series Big and Tall Chair

PRICE$$$

Dimensions : 24 x 27 x 51

Weight : 66 pounds

Features : Additional lumbar support cushion

Continued here:

American Censorship – The Government’s Act of Altering Media

Censorship – Wikipedia

The practice of suppressing information

Censorship is the suppression of speech, public communication, or other information, on the basis that such material is considered objectionable, harmful, sensitive, or “inconvenient” as determined by a government[1] or private institution,[2] for example, corporate censorship.

Governments[1] and private organizations may engage in censorship. Other groups or institutions may propose and petition for censorship.[2] When an individual such as an author or other creator engages in censorship of their own works or speech, it is referred to as self-censorship. It occurs in a variety of different media, including speech, books, music, films, and other arts, the press, radio, television, and the Internet for a variety of claimed reasons including national security, to control obscenity, child pornography, and hate speech, to protect children or other vulnerable groups, to promote or restrict political or religious views, and to prevent slander and libel.

Direct censorship may or may not be legal, depending on the type, location, and content. Many countries provide strong protections against censorship by law, but none of these protections are absolute and frequently a claim of necessity to balance conflicting rights is made, in order to determine what could and could not be censored. There are no laws against self-censorship.

In 399 BC, Greek philosopher, Socrates, defied attempts by the Greek state to censor his philosophical teachings and was sentenced to death by drinking a poison, hemlock. Socrates’ student, Plato, is said to have advocated censorship in his essay on The Republic, which opposed the existence of democracy. In contrast to Plato, Greek playwright Euripides (480406BC) defended the true liberty of freeborn men, including the right to speak freely. In 1766, Sweden became the first country to abolish censorship by law.[4]

The rationale for censorship is different for various types of information censored:

Strict censorship existed in the Eastern Bloc.[11] Throughout the bloc, the various ministries of culture held a tight rein on their writers.[12] Cultural products there reflected the propaganda needs of the state.[12] Party-approved censors exercised strict control in the early years.[13] In the Stalinist period, even the weather forecasts were changed if they suggested that the sun might not shine on May Day.[13] Under Nicolae Ceauescu 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.[13]

Independent journalism did not exist in the Soviet Union until Mikhail Gorbachev became its leader; all reporting was directed by the Communist Party or related organizations. Pravda, 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, illegal self-published books and magazines. Possession of even a single samizdat manuscript such as a book by Andrei Sinyavsky was a serious crime which might involve a visit from the KGB. Another outlet for works which did not find favor with the authorities was publishing abroad.

The People’s Republic of China employs sophisticated censorship mechanisms, referred to as the Golden Shield Project, to monitor the internet. Popular search engines such as Baidu also remove politically sensitive search results.[14][15][16]

Iraq under Baathist Saddam Hussein had much the same techniques of press censorship as did Romania under Nicolae Ceauescu but with greater potential violence.[citation needed]

Cuban media used to be operated under the supervision of the Communist Party’s Department of Revolutionary Orientation, which “develops and coordinates propaganda strategies”.[17] Connection to the Internet is restricted and censored.[18]

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 was imprisoned and later was forced to flee. His book Open Veins of Latin America was banned by the right-wing military government, not only in Uruguay, but also in Chile and Argentina.[19]

In the United States, censorship occurs through books, film festivals, politics, and public schools.[20] See banned books for more information. Additionally, critics of campaign finance reform in the United States say this reform imposes widespread restrictions on political speech.[21][22]

In the Republic of Singapore, Section 33 of the Films Act originally banned the making, distribution and exhibition of “party political films”, at pain of a fine not exceeding $100,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years. The Act further defines a “party political film” as any film or video

In 2001, the short documentary called A Vision of Persistence on opposition politician J. B. Jeyaretnam was also banned for being a “party political film”. The makers of the documentary, all lecturers at the Ngee Ann Polytechnic, later submitted written apologies and withdrew the documentary from being screened at the 2001 Singapore International Film Festival in April, having been told they could be charged in court. Another short documentary called Singapore Rebel by Martyn See, which documented Singapore Democratic Party leader Dr Chee Soon Juan’s acts of civil disobedience, was banned from the 2005 Singapore International Film Festival on the same grounds and See is being investigated for possible violations of the Films Act.

This law, however, is often disregarded when such political films are made supporting the ruling People’s Action Party (PAP). Channel NewsAsia’s five-part documentary series on Singapore’s PAP ministers in 2005, for example, was not considered a party political film.

Exceptions are also made when political films are made concerning political parties of other nations. Films such as Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 911 are thus allowed to screen regardless of the law.

Since March 2009, the Films Act has been amended to allow party political films as long as they were deemed factual and objective by a consultative committee. Some months later, this committee lifted the ban on Singapore Rebel.

Online access to all language versions of Wikipedia was blocked in Turkey on 29 April 2017 by Erdoan’s government.[23]

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 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 catchphrase “Loose lips sink ships” was used as a common justification to exercise official wartime censorship and encourage individual restraint when sharing potentially sensitive information.

An example of “sanitization” policies comes from the USSR under Joseph Stalin, 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 and totalitarianism.

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.[24][25]

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. Examples include the Galileo affair, Edict of Compigne, the Index Librorum Prohibitorum (list of prohibited books) and the condemnation of Salman Rushdie’s novel The Satanic Verses by Iranian leader Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. Images of the Islamic figure Muhammad are also regularly censored. In some secular countries, this is sometimes done to prevent hurting religious sentiments.[26]

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 is extremely controversial, as in the case of The Holocaust (or Holocaust denial), Bombing of Dresden, the Nanking Massacre as found with Japanese history textbook controversies, the Armenian Genocide, the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989, and the Winter Soldier Investigation of the Vietnam War.

In the context of secondary school education, the way facts and history 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 which is the version used by most school classes[27] contained approximately 75 separate edits, omissions, and changes from the original Bradbury manuscript.

In February 2006 a National Geographic cover was censored by the Nashravaran Journalistic Institute. The offending cover was about the subject of love and a picture of an embracing couple was hidden beneath a white sticker.[28][28]

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.[29] Picture approval is the right given to an individual to choose which photos will be published and which will not. Robert Redford is well known for insisting upon picture approval.[30] 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.[citation needed]

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.

Self-censorship is the act of censoring or classifying one’s own blog, book, film, or other forms of media. This is done out of fear of, or deference to, the sensibilities or preferences (actual or perceived) of others and without overt pressure from any specific party or institution of authority. Self-censorship is often practiced by film producers, film directors, publishers, news anchors, journalists, musicians, and other kinds of authors including individuals who use social media.[32]

According to a Pew Research Center and the Columbia Journalism Review survey, “About one-quarter of the local and national journalists say they have purposely avoided newsworthy stories, while nearly as many acknowledge they have softened the tone of stories to benefit the interests of their news organizations. Fully four-in-ten (41%) admit they have engaged in either or both of these practices.”[33]

Threats to media freedom have shown a significant increase in Europe in recent years, according to a study published in April 2017 by the Council of Europe.This results in a fear of physical or psychological violence, and the ultimate result is self-censorship by journalists.[34]

Book censorship can be enacted at the national or sub-national level, and can carry legal penalties for their infraction. Books may also be challenged at a local, community level. As a result, books can be removed from schools or libraries, although these bans do not extend outside of that area.

Aside from the usual justifications of pornography and obscenity, some films are censored due to changing racial attitudes or political correctness in order to avoid ethnic stereotyping and/or ethnic offense despite its historical or artistic value. One example is the still withdrawn “Censored Eleven” series of animated cartoons, which may have been innocent then, but are “incorrect” now.

Film censorship is carried out by various countries to differing degrees. For example, only 34 foreign films a year are approved for official distribution in China’s strictly controlled film market.[35]

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.[36]

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 in order to make attempts of defection more difficult. Censorship of maps is also applied by Google Maps, where certain areas are grayed out or blacked or areas are purposely left outdated with old imagery.[37]

Under subsection 48(3) and (4) of the Penang Islamic Religious Administration Enactment 2004, non-Muslims in Malaysia are penalized for using the following words, or to write or publish them, in any form, version or translation in any language or for use in any publicity material in any medium:”Allah”, “Firman Allah”, “Ulama”, “Hadith”, “Ibadah”, “Kaabah”, “Qadhi'”, “Illahi”, “Wahyu”, “Mubaligh”, “Syariah”, “Qiblat”, “Haji”, “Mufti”, “Rasul”, “Iman”, “Dakwah”, “Wali”, “Fatwa”, “Imam”, “Nabi”, “Sheikh”, “Khutbah”, “Tabligh”, “Akhirat”, “Azan”, “Al Quran”, “As Sunnah”, “Auliya'”, “Karamah”, “False Moon God”, “Syahadah”, “Baitullah”, “Musolla”, “Zakat Fitrah”, “Hajjah”, “Taqwa” and “Soleh”.[38][39][40]

Publishers of the Spanish reference dictionary Real Acdemia Espaola received petitions to censor the entries “Jewishness”, “Gypsiness”, “black work” and “weak sex”, claiming that they are either offensive or non-PC.[41]

One elementary school’s obscenity filter changed every reference to the word “tit” to “breast,” so when a child typed “U.S. Constitution” into the school computer, it changed it to Consbreastution.[42]

British photographer and visual artist Graham Ovenden’s photos and paintings were ordered to be destroyed by a London’s magistrate court in 2015 for being “indecent”[43] and their copies had been removed from the online Tate gallery.[44]

A 1980 Israeli law forbade banned artwork composed of the four colours of the Palestinian flag,[45] and Palestinians were arrested for displaying such artwork or even for carrying sliced melons with the same pattern.[46][47][48]

Internet censorship is control or suppression of the publishing or accessing of 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. Individuals and organizations may engage in self-censorship 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 websites 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.[54]

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 and data havens (such as Freenet) 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. Nevertheless, blocking remains an effective means of limiting access to sensitive information for most users when censors, such as those in China, are able to devote significant resources to building and maintaining a comprehensive censorship system.[54]

Views about the feasibility and effectiveness of Internet censorship have evolved in parallel with the development of the Internet and censorship technologies:

A BBC World Service poll of 27,973 adults in 26 countries, including 14,306 Internet users,[58] was conducted between 30 November 2009 and 7 February 2010. The head of the polling organization felt, overall, that the poll showed that:

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).[60]

The rising usages of social media in many nations has led to the emergence of citizens organizing protests through social media, sometimes called “Twitter Revolutions”. The most notable of these social media led protests were parts Arab Spring uprisings, starting in 2010. In response to the use of social media in these protests, the Tunisian government began a hack of Tunisian citizens’ Facebook accounts, and reports arose of accounts being deleted.[61]

Automated systems can be used to censor social media posts, and therefore limit what citizens can say online. This most notably occurs in China, where social media posts are automatically censored depending on content. In 2013, Harvard political science professor Gary King led a study to determine what caused social media posts to be censored and found that posts mentioning the government were not more or less likely to be deleted if they were supportive or critical of the government. Posts mentioning collective action were more likely to be deleted than those that had not mentioned collective action.[62] Currently, social media censorship appears primarily as a way to restrict Internet users’ ability to organize protests. For the Chinese government, seeing citizens unhappy with local governance is beneficial as state and national leaders can replace unpopular officials. King and his researchers were able to predict when certain officials would be removed based on the number of unfavorable social media posts.[63]

Research has proved that criticism is tolerable on social media sites, therefore it is not censored unless it has a higher chance of collective action. It isn’t important whether the criticism is supportive or unsupportive of the states’ leaders, the main priority of censoring certain social media posts is to make sure that no big actions are being made due to something that was said on the internet. Posts that challenge the Party’s political leading role in the Chinese government are more likely to be censored due to the challenges it poses to the Chinese Communist Party.[64]

Since the early 1980s, advocates of video games have emphasized their use as an expressive medium, arguing for their protection under the laws governing freedom of speech and also as an educational tool. Detractors argue that video games are harmful and therefore should be subject to legislative oversight and restrictions. Many video games have certain elements removed or edited due to regional rating standards.[65][66]For example, in the Japanese and PAL Versions of No More Heroes, blood splatter and gore is removed from the gameplay. Decapitation scenes are implied, but not shown. Scenes of missing body parts after having been cut off, are replaced with the same scene, but showing the body parts fully intact.[67]

Surveillance and censorship are different. Surveillance can be performed without censorship, but it is harder to engage in censorship without some form of surveillance.[68] And even when surveillance does not lead directly to censorship, the widespread knowledge or belief that a person, their computer, or their use of the Internet is under surveillance can lead to self-censorship.[69]

Protection of sources is no longer just a matter of journalistic ethics; it increasingly also depends on the journalist’s computer skills and all journalists should equip themselves with a “digital survival kit” if they are exchanging sensitive information online or storing it on a computer or mobile phone.[70][71] And individuals associated with high-profile rights organizations, dissident, protest, or reform groups are urged to take extra precautions to protect their online identities.[72]

The former Soviet Union maintained a particularly extensive program of state-imposed censorship. The main organ for official censorship in the Soviet Union was the Chief Agency for Protection of Military and State Secrets generally known as the Glavlit, its Russian acronym. The Glavlit handled censorship matters arising from domestic writings of just about any kindeven 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 Glavlit’s control. All press agencies and radio and television stations had Glavlit representatives on their editorial staffs.[citation needed]

Sometimes, public knowledge of the existence of a specific document is subtly suppressed, a situation resembling censorship. The authorities taking such action will justify it by declaring the work to be “subversive” or “inconvenient”. An example is Michel Foucault’s 1978 text Sexual Morality and the Law (later republished as The Danger of Child Sexuality), originally published as La loi de la pudeur [literally, “the law of decency”]. This work defends the decriminalization of statutory rape and the abolition of age of consent laws.[citation needed]

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 (private publishing).[73]

Censorship has been criticized throughout history for being unfair and hindering progress. In a 1997 essay on Internet censorship, social commentator Michael Landier claims that censorship is counterproductive as it prevents the censored topic from being discussed. Landier expands his argument by claiming that those who impose censorship must consider what they censor to be true, as individuals believing themselves to be correct would welcome the opportunity to disprove those with opposing views.[74]

Censorship is often used to impose moral values on society, as in the censorship of material considered obscene. English novelist E. M. Forster was a staunch opponent of censoring material on the grounds that it was obscene or immoral, raising the issue of moral subjectivity and the constant changing of moral values. When the novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover was put on trial in 1960, Forster wrote:[75]

Lady Chatterley’s Lover is a literary work of importance…I do not think that it could be held obscene, but am in a difficulty here, for the reason that I have never been able to follow the legal definition of obscenity. The law tells me that obscenity may deprave and corrupt, but as far as I know, it offers no definition of depravity or corruption.

Censorship by country collects information on censorship, internet censorship, press freedom, freedom of speech, and human rights 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.

Related articles

Freedoms

Articles related to censorship

View post:

Censorship – Wikipedia

What Is Censorship? | American Civil Liberties Union

Censorship, the suppression of words, images, or ideas that are “offensive,” happens whenever some people succeed in imposing their personal political or moral values on others. Censorship can be carried out by the government as well as private pressure groups. Censorship by the government is unconstitutional.

In contrast, when private individuals or groups organize boycotts against stores that sell magazines of which they disapprove, their actions are protected by the First Amendment, although they can become dangerous in the extreme. Private pressure groups, not the government, promulgated and enforced the infamous Hollywood blacklists during the McCarthy period. But these private censorship campaigns are best countered by groups and individuals speaking out and organizing in defense of the threatened expression.

American society has always been deeply ambivalent about these questions. On the one hand, our history is filled with examples of overt government censorship, from the 1873 Comstock Law to the 1996 Communications Decency Act. On the other hand, the commitment to freedom of imagination and expression is deeply embedded in our national psyche, buttressed by the First Amendment, and supported by a long line of Supreme Court decisions.

The Supreme Court has interpreted the First Amendment’s protection of artistic expression very broadly. It extends not only to books, theatrical works and paintings, but also to posters, television, music videos and comic books — whatever the human creative impulse produces.

Two fundamental principles come into play whenever a court must decide a case involving freedom of expression. The first is “content neutrality”– the government cannot limit expression just because any listener, or even the majority of a community, is offended by its content. In the context of art and entertainment, this means tolerating some works that we might find offensive, insulting, outrageous — or just plain bad.

The second principle is that expression may be restricted only if it will clearly cause direct and imminent harm to an important societal interest. The classic example is falsely shouting fire in a crowded theater and causing a stampede. Even then, the speech may be silenced or punished only if there is no other way to avert the harm.

SEXSEXUAL SPEECHSex in art and entertainment is the most frequent target of censorship crusades. Many examples come to mind. A painting of the classical statue of Venus de Milo was removed from a store because the managers of the shopping mall found its semi-nudity “too shocking.” Hundreds of works of literature, from Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings to John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath, have been banned from public schools based on their sexual content.

A museum director was charged with a crime for including sexually explicit photographs by Robert Mapplethorpe in an art exhibit.

American law is, on the whole, the most speech-protective in the world — but sexual expression is treated as a second-class citizen. No causal link between exposure to sexually explicit material and anti-social or violent behavior has ever been scientifically established, in spite of many efforts to do so. Rather, the Supreme Court has allowed censorship of sexual speech on moral grounds — a remnant of our nation’s Puritan heritage.

This does not mean that all sexual expression can be censored, however. Only a narrow range of “obscene” material can be suppressed; a term like “pornography” has no legal meaning . Nevertheless, even the relatively narrow obscenity exception serves as a vehicle for abuse by government authorities as well as pressure groups who want to impose their personal moral views on other people.

PORNOGRAPHIC! INDECENT! OBSCENE!Justice John Marshall Harlan’s line, “one man’s vulgarity is another’s lyric,” sums up the impossibility of developing a definition of obscenity that isn’t hopelessly vague and subjective. And Justice Potter Stewart’s famous assurance, “I know it when I see it,” is of small comfort to artists, writers, movie directors and lyricists who must navigate the murky waters of obscenity law trying to figure out what police, prosecutors, judges and juries will think.

The Supreme Court’s current definition of constitutionally unprotected Obscenity, first announced in a 1973 case called Miller v. California, has three requirements. The work must 1) appeal to the average person’s prurient (shameful, morbid) interest in sex; 2) depict sexual conduct in a “patently offensive way” as defined by community standards; and 3) taken as a whole, lack serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value.

The Supreme Court has held that Indecent expression — in contrast with “obscenity” — is entitled to some constitutional protection, but that indecency in some media (broadcasting, cable, and telephone) may be regulated. In its 1978 decision in Federal Communications Commission v. Pacifica, the Court ruled that the government could require radio and television stations to air “indecent” material only during those hours when children would be unlikely listeners or viewers. Broadcast indecency was defined as: “language that describes, in terms patently offensive as measured by contemporary community standards for the broadcast medium, sexual or excretory activities or organs.” This vague concept continues to baffle both the public and the courts.

PORNOGRAPHY is not a legal term at all. Its dictionary definition is “writing or pictures intended to arouse sexual desire.” Pornography comes in as many varieties as the human sexual impulse and is protected by the First Amendment unless it meets the definition for illegal obscenity.

VIOLENCEIS MEDIA VIOLENCE A THREAT TO SOCIETY?Today’s calls for censorship are not motivated solely by morality and taste, but also by the widespread belief that exposure to images of violence causes people to act in destructive ways. Pro-censorship forces, including many politicians, often cite a multitude of “scientific studies” that allegedly prove fictional violence leads to real-life violence.

There is, in fact, virtually no evidence that fictional violence causes otherwise stable people to become violent. And if we suppressed material based on the actions of unstable people, no work of fiction or art would be safe from censorship. Serial killer Theodore Bundy collected cheerleading magazines. And the work most often cited by psychopaths as justification for their acts of violence is the Bible.

But what about the rest of us? Does exposure to media violence actually lead to criminal or anti-social conduct by otherwise stable people, including children, who spend an average of 28 hours watching television each week? These are important questions. If there really were a clear cause-and-effect relationship between what normal children see on TV and harmful actions, then limits on such expression might arguably be warranted.

WHAT THE STUDIES SHOWStudies on the relationship between media violence and real violence are the subject of considerable debate. Children have been shown TV programs with violent episodes in a laboratory setting and then tested for “aggressive” behavior. Some of these studies suggest that watching TV violence may temporarily induce “object aggression” in some children (such as popping balloons or hitting dolls or playing sports more aggressively) but not actual criminal violence against another person.

CORRELATIONAL STUDIES that seek to explain why some aggressive people have a history of watching a lot of violent TV suffer from the chicken-and-egg dilemma: does violent TV cause such people to behave aggressively, or do aggressive people simply prefer more violent entertainment? There is no definitive answer. But all scientists agree that statistical correlations between two phenomena do not mean that one causes the other.

INTERNATIONAL COMPARISONS are no more helpful. Japanese TV and movies are famous for their extreme, graphic violence, but Japan has a very low crime rate — much lower than many societies in which television watching is relatively rare. What the sudies reveal on the issue of fictional violence and real world aggression is — not much.

The only clear assertion that can be made is that the relationship between art and human behavior is a very complex one. Violent and sexually explicit art and entertainment have been a staple of human cultures from time immemorial. Many human behavioralists believe that these themes have a useful and constructive societal role, serving as a vicarious outlet for individual aggression.

WHERE DO THE EXPERTS AGREE?Whatever influence fictional violence has on behavior, most expert believe its effects are marginal compared to other factors. Even small children know the difference between fiction and reality, and their attitudes and behavior are shaped more by their life circumstances than by the books they read or the TV they watch. In 1972, the U.S. Surgeon General’s Advisory Committee on Television and Social Behavior released a 200-page report, “Television and Growing Up: The Impact of Televised Violence,” which concluded, “The effect [of television] is small compared with many other possible causes, such as parental attitudes or knowledge of and experience with the real violence of our society.” Twenty-one years later, the American Psychological Association published its 1993 report, “Violence & Youth,” and concluded, “The greatest predictor of future violent behavior is a previous history of violence.” In 1995, the Center for Communication Policy at UCLA, which monitors TV violence, came to a similar conclusion in its yearly report: “It is known that television does not have a simple, direct stimulus-response effect on its audiences.”

Blaming the media does not get us very far, and, to the extent that diverts the public’s attention from the real causes of violence in society, it may do more harm than good.

WHICH MEDIA VIOLENCE WOULD YOU BAN?A pro-censorship member of Congress once attacked the following shows for being too violent: The Miracle Worker, Civil War Journal, Star Trek 9, The Untouchables, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. What would be left if all these kinds of programs were purged from the airwaves? Is there good violence and bad violence? If so, who decides? Sports and the news are at least as violent as fiction, from the fights that erupt during every televised hockey game, to the videotaped beating of Rodney King by the LA Police Department, shown over and over gain on prime time TV. If we accept censorship of violence in the media, we will have to censor sports and news programs.

Original post:

What Is Censorship? | American Civil Liberties Union


12345...102030...