Hence, considering the definitions it can be said that though the primary task of censorship is to put checks and balances on media releases of any kind, quite often it has been observed that restrictions put by the dint of the process of censorship are primary targeted to curb the liberty and freedom of expression in specific forms. Unlike the Chinese government, the Nepalese government strives for protecting the right to free expression in a thorough manner. This can be argued by citing the fact that one particular clause in Article 15 of the Interim Constitution of Nepal (2006) states that “Radio, television, online or any other types of digital or electronic means, press or any other communication media shall not be closed, seized or their registration be cancelled because of publishing, broadcasting or printing any material by such means of audio, audio-visual or electronic equipments…” (Dhungana, 2013). But this is not the case with the Republic of China that has shown a much stringent policy towards controlling the media and curbing the rights to free expression. In this respect it must be said that “Modern day China, more than almost any other country in the world, severely restricts its citizens freedom of speech and expression. Oddly enough, Article 35 of the current Chinese constitution, written in 1982, stipulates “Citizens of the PRC have freedom of speech, publication, assembly, association, procession and demonstration.” Up to the advent of the internet, the Chinese government had been able to successfully curtail this freedom in nearly all its physical manifestations. China has a tightly controlled traditional media, China forces all published information to be from official sources and to be vetted through the state” (Communism and Computer Ethics, n.d.).
Though the concept of freedom of speech is thoroughly ingrained in western democratic principles, in practice, the imposition of censorship, quite often, curbs the freedom of liberty of expression to a large extent. It has been observed that in almost every democratic nation, the policy of censorship is used as a legal weapon to curb the degree of freedom and liberty of expression. Censorship is often used as a legal right to tailor the media releases in such a way that it befits some specific political purposes and appeases some specific political and social objectives. It has been observed that “Such rights might be tailored to protect state security from a Lockesian social contract perspective, but a Kantian categorical outlook surely provides for a society in which everyone can speak freely is better to one in which no one can speak freely” (Communism and Computer Ethics, n.d.). In the Republic of China, for instance, media censorship is used as a tool for manipulating the concept of free speech. The Chinese government deliberately use the process of censorship to curb the freedom and liberty of expression of myriads of media releases and public opinions. Moreover, it has often been observed that the proclamation of censorship and the implementation of the very process itself is a menace in the context of prohibiting the access of common public to the real and complete news. In this respect one must take into note the fact that “Media censorship takes many forms in the way you get your news. While news stories are often edited for length, there are many choices that are made that are designed to keep some information from becoming public. Sometimes these decisions are made to safeguard a person's privacy, others to protect media outlets from corporate or political fallout” (Halbrooks, 2018). Hence, considering all such facts it can be said that though media censorship is a process that had its inception to act as a guardian of media to strike a balance of privacy, responsibility and accountability on the part of media houses; at present the practice of imposing censorship is considered in the negative terms as the process has been unduly used to curb the freedom and liberty of expression in many occasions.
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Defining Censorship (n.d.). [online] Available at: http://media.okstate.edu/faculty/jsenat/censorship/defining.htm [Accessed February 27, 2018]
Dhungana, S. (2013). Media censorship in Nepal. [online] Available at: https://www.slideshare.net/Siromanidhungana/media-censorship-in-nepal [Accessed March 1, 2018]
Halbrooks, G. (2018). How Media Censorship Affects the News You See. [online] Available at: https://www.thebalance.com/how-media-censorship-affects-the-news-you-see-2315162 [Accessed February 27, 2018]