Media Blackouts —How Important Stories Are Hidden From You
“When a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?”
I’m sure you’ve heard this expression before, but have you ever considered how it applies to the news?
After all, if an event happens somewhere in the world and the news doesn’t cover it, did it really happen? When an event occurs, and you never hear about it through the news, then to you it never actually happened.
That’s what a media blackout is.
A media blackout is the intentional restriction or suppression of news coverage.
Sometimes important things happen in the world and you never find out about them. Why? Because somebody conducted a media blackout.
Think about it: during WW2 from 1939–1945, Hitler was massacring millions upon millions of Jews in the Holocaust and the world had very little idea it was happening.
While allied leaders had some intel on the atrocity, most people weren’t aware of the horrific scale of the holocaust until they stumbled upon the death camps after defeating Germany.
How was this possible? Because Hitler instituted a media blackout. No news sources within Germany were allowed to report on it, and foreign news organisations had no access to what was happening inside Germany at the time.
Some even claim that most Germans had no idea the holocaust was going on.
Out of sight. Out of mind.
Media blackouts are not something unique to particular countries. They’re a tactic used by powerful organisations across every single country in the world; whether it be governments or giant corporations.
Media blackouts are incredibly subtle and sneaky, after all, it’s very difficult to notice the absence of something that you don’t know exists. You don’t know what you don’t know.
So it takes a media literate individual who’s really paying attention to actually notice when a media blackout is taking place.
In this article, I want to explain how media blackouts work and why they’re used.