Censorship blocks something from being read, heard, or seen. If you've ever heard the sound of bleeping when someone is speaking on television, that's censorship.

To "censor" is to review something and to choose to remove or hide parts of it that are considered unacceptable. Censorship is the name for the process or idea of keeping things like obscene word or graphic images from an audience. There is also such a thing as self-censorship, which is when you refrain from saying certain things — or possibly re-wording them — depending on who is listening.

Definitions of censorship

n deleting parts of publications or correspondence or theatrical performances

censorship in the form of prudish expurgation
censorship because of perceived obscenity or immorality
Type of:
the act of deleting something written or printed

n counterintelligence achieved by banning or deleting any information of value to the enemy

censoring, security review
show 6 types...
hide 6 types...
military censorship
all types of censorship conducted by personnel of the armed forces
national censorship
censorship under civil authority of communications entering or leaving of crossing the borders of the United States or its territories or possessions
civil censorship
military censorship of civilian communications (correspondence or printed matter of films) entering or leaving of circulating within territories controlled by armed forces
field press censorship
security review of news (including all information or material intended for dissemination to the public) subject to the jurisdiction of the armed forces
prisoner of war censorship
military censorship of communication to and from prisoners of war and civilian internees held by the armed forces
armed forces censorship
military censorship of personal communications to or from persons in the armed forces
Type of:
intelligence activities concerned with identifying and counteracting the threat to security posed by hostile intelligence organizations or by individuals engaged in espionage or sabotage or subversion or terrorism

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.