Censorpedia: An Interactive Database of Censorship Incidents

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Featured Case

Date: 2004

Region: North America

Subject: Sexual/Gender Orientation

Medium: Commercial Advertising


Artist: Bronx Lesbian and Gay Health Resource Consortium

Confronting Bodies: Infinity Broadcasting's Infinity Outdoor division

Dates of Action: 2004

Location: Bronx, New York

Description of Artwork: One advertisement featured two men embracing with a caption that read, "I'm not gay, but I sometimes have sex with other guys." Another was intended to reach lesbians and a third ad showed a lone man with a caption about finding gay men's healthcare.

The Incident: The Bronx Lesbian and Gay Health Resource Consortium sponsored an ad campaign to increase awareness of healthcare and HIV protection for homosexual populations in the Bronx. Infinity Outdoor pulled the advertisements featuring the two men from city bus stops in the Bronx after recieving complaints. The complaints focused on the ad's reference to sex. A spokesman from Infinity Outdoor suggested that the removal of the posters was not widespread but rather a "case-by-case basis."

Results of Incident: Infinity Outdoor replaced the controversial posters with the two other ads in the consortium's campaign.

Source: The New York Times

What is Censorpedia?

Censorpedia is a crowdsourced online database of censorship cases within the arts and in culture. It is aimed at those researching censorship, at activists working for freedom of expression and at artists and other cultural producers whose expression has been subject to censorship or attempted censorship.

Censorpedia documents censorship incidents by providing the who, what, when, where and why. By providing a repository of information about what is vulnerable to censorship and about the strategies and tactics that have defeated previous’ censorship attempts, Censorpedia aids the fight for free expression.

Researchers can search for a specific case, year or keyword using the search box, as well as browse by medium, by grounds for censorship, or explore a random case.

Activists can search for ongoing cases or contribute a case that is ongoing or recently resolved.

Artists and cultural producers are similarly invited to add cases they are directly involved with or are familiar with first hand.

Censorpedia builds on the landmark 1994 art project The File Room, initiated by Muntadas.

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