The Instigator
Darth_Grievous_42
Pro (for)
Tied
8 Points
The Contender
johannesjones
Con (against)
Tied
8 Points

Censorship in the Media should be Abolished

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/11/2008 Category: Education
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 12,125 times Debate No: 5948
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (9)
Votes (3)

 

Darth_Grievous_42

Pro

As Pro, I will be defending the stance that all forms of media censorship (a.k.a. bleeping curse words, black barring sexual scenes, cutting violent scenes) must be abolished, thus, the polar opposite of my stance that my opponent must take is that all forms of media censorship must not be abolished (could be interpreted to mean "stay as they are"). This is not a purely American debate, thus, I will not discuss the First Amendment, and by accepting this debate, neither will my opponent.

There are three main items that are censored from the media: cursing, violence, and sex. You are all hopefully old enough to know about all three. If your not your either extremely sheltered or lying. However, for clarities sake, here is a supposed list of all English language curse words

Here is an example of violence

and sex

That last one is meant as a joke; however, I think you get the jist. All of these were accessible by youtube, and while the last one was less serious, if you look around you will find much more real and graphic videos. Youtube is probably among the top ten most visited Internet sites in the world, with hundreds of videos added everyday. It is not difficult to set up an account and even easier to make a fake one. Many of the explicit content videos that have been uploaded onto the site are blocked by a mere "confirm your age" button. All one needs to do is change the birth year to anytime earlier than 1988, and then they are granted complete access to any video, mature or otherwise. This ease to view whatever you want no matter what age you are is a perfect example of how in today's age information is available to literally anyone. Even if one does not specifically view the content, they are always able to hear about it from third parties, such as friends. We are simply not able to censor anything anymore, and thus, we should stop trying. As the saying goes, if the door is locked, go through the window. Even if the FCC or other communication organizations bleeped out every piece of vulgarity on TV, the internet will always get a hold of it. By that time it will spread so far that even if you found and deleted a hundred websites there are surely a one to a thousand others that will still have it, with more emerging all the time. An example is the infamous "two girls one cup" video. It is overly graphic (please don't try to watch it, and if you have, you poor bastard) yet if you google it, a link to the actual video is the first one on the page. Many places have removed it, but it is still out there. It is simply inevitable that people, not excluding children, will eventually be exposed to the 'horrors' of real life, like it or not. Already many children know what the concept of sex is, and violence is certainly nothing new to them what with modern video games and television. Even something as seemingly innocent like Pokemon is all about violence. Every episode has at least battle, where it can clearly be observed that one creature has every intention of inflicting physical harm on the other, and so on. Even Mario has example of violence, and I daresay trying to censor that game would be a fool's errand. Cursing is also beginning to integrate itself into children's shows, such as damn and hell. Less insulting than the F word, but still there. Some parents, especially those in lower income areas, who do know these words are very likely to use these words within earshot of their children, whether intentional or not. Yet even if the parent is tight lipped, they cannot always be around to plug their children's ears. Passers by on the street or other kids in school are just as likely to expose the child to those words as any TV set. Simply put, it is unavoidable. All people will learn, at one point or another, about all three of these forbidden fruits. Rather than bastardize them, only increasing their appeal (curiosity killed the cat), it seems like integrating them would be a far better preventative measure. A child will crave candy if it is regulated, but just let them feast and they will get sick, eventually despising it all together. I'm sure at our respective ages, words such as the F bomb have lost their shock appeal, especially (for instance) after watching a movie like Jarhead. However, as children, curse words are the equivalent of smoking, you only do it if you're cool. When they do say it, others are shocked and amazed, giving you attention, thus increasing use. Eventually its simply integrated into your vocabulary, as common as "the". So take away the shock, you take away the praise, and then eventually take away the pleasure, making it boring and useless. In conclusion, sex, violence, and cursing are now parts of our society. They are as every day as driving your car or sleeping in a bed. So why hide from them? What's the point? At one point or another, we will earn about it, and as long as it is condemned, we will have a desire for it, only increasing its use, and more importantly, its improper use. Rather than close our eyes and simply pretend its not there we must open up and accept the inevitable, practicing its use and preventing abuse. Instead, we are currently wasting time and resources pretending that something very real will just vanish if we cover it with a sheet. That sheet is censorship. As much as we might want it to go away, it won't as long as the curiosity of what's behind the sheet exists. Rather, lets get rid of the wonder and expose it for what it really is, satisfying our need to know. Abolish censorship, abolish the censored. Education, not eradication, is the cure.
johannesjones

Con

I thank my opponent for an interest topic and opinion. Good Luck to him.

Let my thesis simply stand as: Censorship in the media should not be abolished completely. On with my 3 points.

1) My opponent stated:
"Many of the explicit content videos that have been uploaded onto the site are blocked by a mere "confirm your age" button. All one needs to do is change the birth year to anytime earlier than 1988, and then they are granted complete access to any video, mature or otherwise. This ease to view whatever you want no matter what age you are is a perfect example of how in today's age information is available to literally anyone."
It is true that many videos are blocked by a largely ineffectual honors system regarding age. Many other videos, however, are removed by Youtube. Youtube is censored. <http://www.youtube.com...; While it is all but impossible to take off inappropriate videos as soon as they are posted, Youtube tries to keep them to a minimum. You cannot view "whatever you want" via youtube. As for the rest of the internet, that can be effectively filtered or monitored by parents or guardians. <http://www.covenanteyes.com...; <http://www.internetsafety.com...;

2)"It is simply inevitable that people, not excluding children, will eventually be exposed to the 'horrors' of real life, like it or not. Already many children know what the concept of sex is, and violence is certainly nothing new to them what with modern video games and television. Even something as seemingly innocent like Pokļæ½mon is all about violence. Every episode has at least battle, where it can clearly be observed that one creature has every intention of inflicting physical harm on the other, and so on."
Once again, just because some content displaying my opponent's 3 vices gets through does not mean all of it should. People are exposed to real life eventually. That is true. The dangers of overprotection from the realities of life have been presented in many movies and books (The Village, The Giver, The Truman Show, and The Matrix to name a few.) This does not mean a society should be on the opposite end of the spectrum and leave it completely up to guardians to shelter children from information. The innocence that comes from childhood ignorance makes for a more stress free early life.

3) Many guardians are of the opinion that children should be sheltered from sex, violence, and profanity. Lack of censorship requires them to censor everything themselves, which is much more difficult with television than with the internet. Parental blocks are possible, but channels that may have inappropriate content may also have children's shows. This makes the DIY censorship tedious. Overhearing curse words on the street and having them consistently on television (which is a focus, not a distraction) are two different things.

Censorship is, then, beneficial to society.
Debate Round No. 1
Darth_Grievous_42

Pro

1) I don't know why, but 2 out of 3 of those links would not work, however the last one did. True, you can purchase blockers, and youtube is censored from the hard core stuff, such as actually seeing the full genitalia, however it isn't just youtube were one can access things like porn. I'm sure if I gave any links this debate would be shut down, so I'll allow you and he readers to do your own search if you like. But those site as well can easily be accessed with a little white lie, and no one would be the wiser. Also, even if the household were to place a program so incredibly conceived were one could not access any Internet site with even the slightest chance of viewing or hearing anything vulgar, there is always the outside world. Friends whose parents are more lax, any of the millions of free wifi sites for a laptop, or lets even stretch outside the mere boundaries of the Internet. You don't think there are people who could care less what age they sell things like magazines and movies? But that's just sex. There are even more ways to access things with violence and profanity. As you mentioned in your point two, there are many books and movies, along with millions of website, that have one, if not all three, en masse. There is just no way you can keep all that away from the eyes of anyone. If one can't see it one way they'll surly see it another. Censorship is simply rendered completely useless. So why have it at all?

2) We finally tackle a real issue: childhood innocence. Sure it makes them cute, but how much is it worth now? Many toys you see are formulating the in particular sex it's aimed at into a certain stereotype. For girls the toys like Barbie and Bratz are turning them into the ideal mans woman: slutty, exposing and easy. For boys, all those soldier toys are turning them into 'macho" men, some of which have started to use swear words like damn and hell. Even now they're beginning to be transformed into what they are expected to be by the time their in high school. Unless you plan on taking down the toy industry, they're already affected by it. Then again come problems of interaction with the outside world. Unless this child's life is dictated so they live under the proverbial 'rock', they will be exposed to these 'vices' in some manner. So again, the attempt at censorship is futile, as these influences will come from some direction. Perhaps we shouldn't be throwing them at people, but trying to hold them back is completely useless.

3) This only proves my point. Stop trying to shelter them. Its tiring, expensive, and as I've said before, utterly impossible. The parents opinion is little in comparison to the facts of life. Times are a changing, whether for better or worse. This fight back is only a small hindrance to a much larger force that is, at some point, going to affect the life of a child. All the child needs is a glimpse, and their natural curiosity will take a hold of them. That will happen all the fast because of how quickly these are spreading across the modern media. It can't be stopped. A passer by saying a curse word is as likely if not more so to embed it into a kids memory, and they will repeat it whether they know its meaning or not. Its just human nature. Ignoring the problem will not fix it. Likewise with censorship. Trying to pretending like those things don't exist is folly. It won't work. So stop trying. Rather face it head on, and use education rather than ignorance. The ignorance is what's causing the problem in the first place. Taking away the cookie jar doesn't squash the desire for the cookie. In fact, it only increases it. Censorship is the main problem with the extinguishing of these vices, and every single movie and television producer knows it and will exploit that desire for everything it's worth.

So as you should clearly be able to see, censorship is quite harmful to society, and therefore, must be extinguished.
johannesjones

Con

Given that some redundancy has developed among the 3 points, I will respond in a different format.

a) Childhood innocence is still valuable. It seems, in point 2, that my opponent says that industry is channeling boys and girls into a stereotype. He implies with his choice of words that the stereotypes are undesirable. I agree. Parents should try to divert their children from modeling "toys like Barbie and Bratz" and "all those soldier toys". It is more difficult for a parent to do this if companies can display unrestricted content in media viewed by many children, mostly for the purpose of enticing them. With censorship, it is possible for a parent to let their child out from under the "rock" and still introduce issues of sex and violence to their children on their own terms, and in their own way. Also, knowledge of sex and violence make children's lives more complicated. They need to learn about it eventually, but they benefit from a period without society depicting it to them in extreme ways. It has been said that Ignorance is bliss. This is a bliss reserved for childhood. Knowledge is power for adults.

b) Censorship is not futile. I already displayed how even Youtube strives to make it less likely that children will stumble upon certain content. The possibility of obtaining premature knowledge of sex, violence and language is always there but the amount discovered and the chance of discovering can be made lower. My opponent states "Censorship is the main problem with the extinguishing of these vices, and every single movie and television producer knows it and will exploit that desire for everything it's worth." First of all, the extinguishing of these vices is not a realistic social goal. Also, my opponent appears to be employing hyperbole, given that the producers of Veggie Tales do not appear to be exploiting the vices for everything they're worth.

c) Censorship provides freedom. It is not only for children. Censorship allows people to freely explore certain media without being extremely cautious. If someone desires uncensored media my opponent has clearly stated that it is easy to find. Lack of censoring could make fully graphic images of violence and nudity nearly impossible to avoid, while I have proved that censoring makes it possible to avoid them. Education should not come from toys my opponent mentioned in point 1.

d) Images of child pornography are taken off the internet by the government. This is an example of censorship in the internet. This is not a part of what is usually referred to as "The Media", because it is illegal. The ability of the government to censor products of illegal activities helps to deter them.

Thanks for a good debate-

Johannes Jones
Debate Round No. 2
Darth_Grievous_42

Pro

Darth_Grievous_42 forfeited this round.
johannesjones

Con

To restate:

Censorship is valuable to society.
-it helps parents who want their children to be protected
-children benefit by learning from their parents instead of television or other industries
-if one wishes to avoid graphic or explicit content, they can watch television or drive down the highway without seeing it

Thanks,
Johannes Jones
Debate Round No. 3
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by Darth_Grievous_42 8 years ago
Darth_Grievous_42
I apologize for my forfeit, I thought I had more time.
Posted by jjmd280 8 years ago
jjmd280
wtfpwned at it's finest.
Posted by jjmd280 8 years ago
jjmd280
Yep - that too - but trolls prey on the weak-minded - if you fall into that trap, well.....
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 8 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
Or you got wtfpwned by a troll of course.
Posted by jjmd280 8 years ago
jjmd280
You have to want to find it - it is not like it appears on any popular website. Just like the extreme aspects of porn. If you "accidentally" stumble onto 2 girls, one cup, you are either lying to yourself that you weren't looking for it, or are so incredibly ignorant that you shouldn't be on the internet at all.
Posted by Darth_Grievous_42 8 years ago
Darth_Grievous_42
However, Ragnar, it is out there and just as easily accessed like any of the other examples I listed. While the events of 2G1C may not be those of everyday adult life, they are still as able to be exposed to anyone, adult of child, as anything else that's on the internet. And if you've followed the event at all, at it's peak it was exposed to quite alot (thousands) of people.
Posted by I-am-a-panda 8 years ago
I-am-a-panda
ragnar, what would we do without you?? or what would the comments section do without you?
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 8 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
"It is simply inevitable that people, not excluding children, will eventually be exposed to the 'horrors' of real life, like it or not"

Not that I like censorship, but that statement, in the context of speaking of 2girls1cup, is not exactly sensible.... "real life" has very little to do with lesbian fresh coprophagia and emetophagia for most people.
Posted by jjmd280 8 years ago
jjmd280
Here's one debate I'll never have. You present your case very well, Darth. Censorship is evil, no other word for it.
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Vote Placed by johannesjones 8 years ago
johannesjones
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