Social Media Censorship

man in black crew neck shirt with red and white face paint
Type: Vocabulary
Originally published on September 18, 2020 and last updated on February 4, 2023

In recent times and with the increase of fake news on the internet, social media platforms are increasingly deciding to censor individuals and organizations. Some people believe that censoring these people and organizations will only benefit society by removing fake news and conspiracy theories. Others believe that there should be no censorship and it goes against their freedom of speech.

Go through the vocabulary below with your students and ask them to try and use this vocabaulry where possible when discussing the different conversation questions.

Useful Vocabulary

Try and use the following vocabulary when answering the question. Click to look up the definition in the dictionary

  • censor (verb)
  • social media (noun)
  • allow (verb)
  • increasingly (adverb)
  • beneficial (adjective)
  • censorship (noun)

Conversation Questions

  • Should social media platforms be allowed to censor people?
  • Do you think social media platforms should censor people? If so, in what circumstances?
  • What could be the potential problems of censoring people on social media?
  • In general, what do you think of the negative effects and the positive effects of social media censorship?
  • What are some examples of censorship on social media platforms that have occurred in recent history?
  • How do social media companies determine what content to censor?
  • How does censorship on social media compare to censorship in traditional media?
  • How do censorship policies on social media impact the ability for businesses to advertise on the platform?
  • In which ways does censorship policies on social media impact the ability for activists to organise on the platform?
  • How do censorship policies on social media differ between countries?
This conversation topic was prepared by Gregory

Gregory is a qualified TEFL teacher who has been teaching English as a Foreign Language (ESL) for over a decade. He has taught in-person classes in Spain and to English learners around the world online.