Nik Williams - 14 December 2018
We asked Scottish writers how online surveillance has impacted on their work. The answers we got were shocking
We know what censorship looks like: writers being murdered, attacked or imprisoned; TV and radio stations being shut down; the only newspapers parrot the state; journalists lost in the bureaucratic labyrinth to secure a license or permit; government agencies approving which novels, plays and poetry collections can be published; books being banned or burned or the extreme regulation of access to printing materials or presses. All of these damage free expression, but they leave a fingerprint, something visible that can be measured, but what about self-censorship? This leaves no such mark.
When writers self-censor, there is no record, they just stop writing or avoid certain topics and these decisions are lost to time. Without being able to record and document isolated cases the way we can with explicit government censorship, the only thing we can do is identify potential drivers to self-censorship.... See more
openDemocracy is an independent global media platform publishing up to 60 articles a week and attracting over 8 million visits per year.
Through reporting and analysis of social and political issues, openDemocracy seeks to educate citizens to challenge power and encourage democratic debate across the world. With human rights as our central guiding focus, and open-mindedness as our method, we ask tough questions about freedom, justice and democracy.
openDemocracy aim to help those fighting for their rights gain the agency to make their case and to inspire action.