Subscribe to Computing Intelligence

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Beyond The Streisand Effect

The Streisand Effect is a term bandied about on the internet to describe situations when attempted censorship backfires and ends up amplifying interest in the targeted information or event rather than suppressing it. In what is possibly one of the most dramatic cases of litigious bullying backfiring, the British Chiropractic Association (BCA) sued Simon Singh for libel after he called some of their unsubstantiated claims (such as chiropractic treatment for asthma and colic) 'bogus', and now find themselves in the ignominious and entirely fitting position of having one in four chiropractors under investigation for misleading medical claims (including some of the BCA's own officers). I am greatly impressed with Simon Singh's tenacity and backbone, and I think he and his supporters deserve a great deal of credit for taking a stand for critical journalism.