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Is censorship a good or bad idea? Why?

I think that censorship is needed because in this day and age, there is a lot of explicit content in the world, which range from books, to online and video games. This content should not be shown to young children, never mind teenagers, depending on the kind of content it is. I agree very much with censorship because imagine what we would see if there was no censorship. It is important for people to be well educated in schools and colleges and also at home, so that they dont need to go out searching information on drugs, alcohol and sex. By educating people, you are preventing this happening. I dont think that any ideas should be kept outside the classroom. It is a place of learning and if the students want to know about drugs, alcohol and anything else, then I think it should be taught. Education plays a large role in censorship. In the USA, the theory of evolution has been banned from some educational systems and it has been replaced with the theory of Creationism which suggests that the Earth was created by God. I think that some websites need to be monitored more, e.g. the sites the spread and promote child nudity. These sites shouldnt even be there in the first place. This is horrible because children are the most vulnerable of any human being, and this is exploiting them to sick minded people. These websites should have been taken down a long time ago; the Internet obviously isnt monitored enough these days if you can find those things online today. From this graph, the countries that have the most censorship tend to be in Asia, then in Africa. This shows that those continents will have limited freedom to what they can search or watch. They obviously have a higher security than the European countries and the USA.

Freedom 0=Most Free, 100=Most Censorship


Estonia USA Germany Australia UK Italy Brazil Nigeria Malaysia Venezuela Rwanda Egypt Pakistan Thiland Ethiopia Vietnam China Iran 0 20 40 60 80 100

Freedom 0=Most Free, 100=Most Censorship

Censorship does need to change both ways, I think that some things arent monitored enough, so the government and the media should be focusing on making the internet and films/TV programmes more acceptable, rather than other things which arent as important. On social networking sites, such as Facebook and Twitter, you do get some images and videos which might be offensive to some users of these sites. In some ways, they should be taken down, but also, as an argument against it, you dont have to watch the videos. Although, if they are quite explicit, I think they should be banned/taken down. YouTube is also interesting when it comes to censorship. Some of the videos you find can only be viewed if you are 18 or over. You have to make an account, but you can easily lie, and it isnt monitored very well, so anyone can get away with it. The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) is an independent, non-governmental body, which have had responsibilities over cinema since 1913. Moving image material is submitted to the BBFC for a rating and they will award a ratings certificate that identifies what audience age range the material will be suitable for. Sometimes with films, its not the censoring which is the problem. When young people want to watch a film which is an 18, its not difficult to get hold of one. I think that the parents are influencing the growth of violence in children because they are buying the scary and gruesome films for their children. Even so, watching films online is easy too, there are lots of illegal websites and they never ask for your identity, so getting hold of these films are easy. In these cases, there should be more censorship, especially when watching an 18 film. When the Woman in Black came out in cinemas, it was put out as a 12 age rating, but now its changed to a 15. This may have been because they got complaints from people; probably parents of young children as the film was scarier than it should be for 12 year olds to watch. When you buy video games, you know what you are getting because you can read the box and see the age restrictions. I dont think that censorship is a problem because you are promoting it to the correct audience. I think that parents are responsible if and when their children become violent because they are the ones buying the video game for them. They know what they are buying so they have no reason to complain when this happens. I think that video games & films and books are different. In video games & films, you are viewing moving images, so you are getting more of an experience, so you see what is happening. In a book, you can only image whats happening, so your imagination is responsible for what you view, e.g. In a book, if someone had been murdered, you use your imagination to see what the murder was like, everybody will have a different take, yet in films, if the same thing happened, it would show you the exact murder. I dont think you can censor books; books can be removed off shelves from libraries. Books involving sexual relations, especially homosexual relationships are often targeted. These kinds of books are never promoted for children, so there shouldnt be any problems with them, in my opinion.

Censorship is also good for your own security. A gagging order is a legal order by a court or government which restricts information or comments from being made public. Gag orders are most often used to conceal information from the public. I would understand if people want to take out a gagging order if they wanted to keep their lives private and out of the spotlight, especially if for example, a family member has gone missing, you could understand that the family wouldnt want their lives all over the news, yet if everybody were to take one out, there would be no news in the world. The ASA (Advertising Standards Agency) is the UKs independent regulator of advertising across all media. The investigate complaints made by members of the public and also check the media for advertising which breaks the rules. The CAP (Committee of Advertising Practise) is independently administered by the ASA and they, along with the BCAP (Broadcast Committee of Advertising Practise) are responsible for writing and updating the UK advertising codes. Advertising if very important for companies because this is what helps the company to make money. Adverts have a high impact on the public, so they have to have rules about what can and cant be shown and said on the advert. In the case of most advertising, the preferred response is that people will watch an advert, and then go and buy the product that is being advertised. For example, if McDonalds adverts werent shown on the television, you would not feel the need to go there, and hence, this will prevent obesity in young people. Adverts tend to be more persuasive on children and teenagers than adults, because they will look into the advert and analyse it more. Although advertising for children is banned in some countries, I dont think it should be banned here. If the adverts arent breaking the rules, then they are perfectly fine to be shown. Recently, there have been complaints about the new VIP E-cig adverts. The complaints have stressed that it promotes oral sex as the woman says I want you to get it out. The ASA have received a number of complaints about the adverts and they are currently looking into the complaints.

Media effects theory is how media can affect society, and how society affects the media. If the audience is passive, you can see how exposure to particular aspects of media can influence the behaviour of the readers. Some negative implications of this theory are when people do copycat crimes. A Copycat crime is a criminal act that is inspired by a previous crime that has been in the media or described in fiction. Attack the Gas Station! Was a Korean crime-comedy film that was released in 1999. During a question and answer session with the director of the film, he indicated that the film had inspired real-life copycats in South Korea. This shows how the media can affect the society and the people around us. Perhaps if this film hadnt been made, then maybe there wouldnt have been any mimic murders indicated by this film. This proves that people are very much affected by the media. I dont think that there is anyone in particular who should decide what is censored and what is not. Everybody is going to have different views; there could be ethical issues, religious issues and more. I think its very difficult to say who should decide what is censored and I think that the people that work in the media are more educated in censorship, so it should probably be them who decides, because they are more likely to know what is good and what is bad. Ofcom have responsibilities across television, radio, telecommunications and wireless communication services. The BBC is regulated by Ofcom and their compliance with the programme codes are also regulated by Ofcom. The bad language used on television has massively increased over the years and I think this is because censorship has backed down a bit. 60% of people believe that swearing on television encourages swearing in daily life and 53% believe that children are not effectively protected from swearing on TV. I think that is a true statement, although I dont think that you should ban swearing off of television, I agree that it is having a large effect on young children. Children are staying up later at night and from 9pm onwards are usually when the programmes allow swearing to be heard. The programmes shown arent intended for children to watch, so its the parents fault because they allow their children to stay up late. From these charts, you can see that the majority of people dont find the language on television offensive, although more females have found the language offensive than males have. This shows that females are probably more sensitive to bad language than males are.
Have you been offended by bad language on television in the last 12 months? Males
Yes No Don't Know

Have you been offended by bad language on television in the last 12 months? Females
Yes No Don't Know