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What is Self-Censorship?

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Self censorship is the act of censoring yourself because you fear that governments, firms or institutions will find something you want to say objectionable, sensitive, politically incorrect or inconvenient. It applies to person communications, news, social media, art, literature, film and entertainment. Self censorship may create an environment of fear that suppresses economic activity, culture, political freedom and social processes.

Freedom of the Press

Journalists commonly admit that they avoid stories and soften criticism because they fear repercussions from governments and other organizations. In many cases, news organizations are owned by large firms with diversified business interests.

Science

Scientists and other researchers may face pressure to be politically correct in modern-day academic circles.

Social Media

People get the feeling that everything they say on social media goes on their permanent record to be used against them at anytime. They may also feel that deleted items can be archived and later accessed by employers and other interested parties. Third party companies may aggressively collect such data and correlate it to everything known about a person to be sold to their clients.

Communications

People may self-censor social and professional communications such as email out of the sense that governments can access and permanently archive such conversations. There is also fear that artificial intelligence and other technologies may misinterpret innocent conversations that discuss news items and other topics that may contain sensitive keywords.
Overview: Self Censorship
Area
Privacy
Human Rights
Definition
The act of censoring yourself because you fear that governments, firms or institutions will find something you want to say objectionable, sensitive, politically incorrect or inconvenient.
Impact
Potentially detrimental to political freedom, knowledge exchange, science, economic activity, culture and social interaction.
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