The opaque censorship

A new online craze has emerged designed to expose media bias in the aftermath of the US elections. It’s called “black out bias” or “transparent censorship”, and it’s done to highlight the difference between news and opinion in news media by removing speculation and opinion from the news in an effort to expose and eliminate bias through an opaque “black out”.

The whole exercise is done by first finding an article from any course (with the source to be cited on the final work), and “opaquing out” opinions, adjectives (like horrible, greatly, tenuous etc.), and speculation. The end result is often surprisingly different from the original from site to site, and any subject can be covered.



Some articles appear virtually unchanged. Source NPR¹.


Others seem slightly more altered. Source HP¹.


The trend is being encouraged among online communities to illustrate how much bias, opinion and speculation is being consumed unknowingly by the average news reader. If facts can be made secondary to emotion and popular opinion, it can certainly lead to a dangerous outcome.

People are encouraged to join in with “transparent censorship” and asked to abide by a few simple rules.

-To use their own good judgment

-To not actually black out parts of an article

-To leave quotes and facts untouched (unless they are in fact opinion or unrelated to the article, in which case “black it out” entirely

-Cite an article source

And finally, to hold ‘keeping the public informed’ as the main focus of the exercise, regardless of one’s own political or ideological standing.

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