Censorship in the Federal Republic of Germany

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Participant in a demonstration against planned internet bans in Berlin (2009)
Political dispute: Protest against the emergency laws: Hunger strike in front of the Bremen Cathedral (1968)
Call for "re-orientation" in the American zone of occupation
Illustration to the film The Last Tango in Paris (1972)

Censorship in the Federal Republic of Germany is a topic from the political discussion in Germany . In terms of content, it affects different areas: the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of opinion and press , freedom of art and the protection of minors . As in other democratic countries, the question of whether certain events, measures, conditions and laws can be described as censorship is socially controversial. A pre-censorship as censorship in the classic sense of the Basic Law Article 5 ( "A censorship does not take place.") Unconstitutional . The subject of “censorship” is part of a social debate about state and official interventions such as investigations and indexing , which are not excluded by Article 5 of the Basic Law, but which are perceived as “censorship” in parts of society.


In terms of meaning, the terms democracy and censorship are difficult to reconcile. Democracy - at least in its modern form, which is common in democratically constituted states - excludes censorship. In the course of the 20th century, political practice has also taken more and more into account: Freedom of opinion, freedom of science and art are among the most important characteristics of democratically constituted states. With the Basic Law, which came into force in 1949, as well as the European Convention on Human Rights that was signed with, the Federal Republic of Germany also committed to these values. In practical terms, Germany also ranks in the group of the top twenty countries on relevant indices: in the democracy index of The Economist magazine, it ranks 14th (as complete democracy); similarly in the press freedom ranking of the organization Reporters Without Borders , which placed Germany in 17th place in 2010.

Despite generally declared constitutional principles, freedom of opinion, publication and freedom of the arts is also subject to certain restrictions in Germany. The most important restrictions are other, similarly valued legal interests such as the free development of personality or protection from discrimination . In addition, some exceptions have been set - for example for war and crisis situations (well-known example: the emergency laws ) or certain groups of people ( e.g. prison inmates ). The classic pre-censorship - in the sense of an authority that checks publications in advance and, depending on the requirements, permits, rejects or demands improvements - has been abolished by the Basic Law (Article 5, Paragraph 1: "Censorship does not take place." ). Many consider the practice of so-called post-censorship more common and therefore more problematic, in which restrictive measures are only taken after a publication has appeared . In practice - so the criticism especially from the liberal , left and media-critical spectrum - different mechanisms come into play, which in the end promote censorship-like mechanisms or even establish them through the back door. A related effect that is to be condemned in the sense of democratic participation is the “scissors in the head” - that is, anticipatory self-censorship when producing publications or creative works . Closely related to this is the concept of informal censorship . In contrast to institutional censorship on the part of official or similar institutions - for example, through prohibition or indexing - informal censorship already works in advance: by trying to defuse works that are potentially conflicting. From a social point of view, the question of whether or to what extent censorship takes place or is necessary is controversial: the general positioning on the topic as well as the positioning in individual questions often depends on the general political attitude of the viewer.

An important means of determining the extent of any potential censorship is by comparison. On the one hand with other states. Compared to dictatorships (e.g. North Korea ) or states whose democratic conditions are considered incomplete or semi-authoritarian (example: Russia ), the state of freedom of the press, freedom of opinion and freedom of the arts in Germany appears in a good light. When compared with other fully developed democracies such as Great Britain , the Netherlands , the USA or France , differences in details tend to come into play. The German bans on the glorification of National Socialism are more prominent . Other differences concern greater or lesser restrictions with regard to “free speech” or the tolerated level of sex and violence representations. The legal situation and the underlying legal understanding also vary significantly in some cases. In general, the Netherlands and the Scandinavian countries enjoy the most liberal reputation. Germany and the Anglo-Saxon countries (Great Britain, USA) are considered mixed in terms of liberality. Strongly Catholic countries such as France, Spain and Italy present themselves very differently in the area of ​​general freedoms, but tend to be somewhat more restrictive in the area of ​​sexual issues.

The legal framework must also be taken into account from a legal and social perspective. The comparison with the “ Third Reich ”, the Weimar Republic and the German Empire, as well as the GDR which joined in 1990, is both geographically, legally and morally obvious. Legally speaking, all four came up with different forms of pre- or post-censorship. Examples: the Reichsschrifttumskammer (NS), the film test center (Weimar Republic and the time of National Socialism ), police prohibitions (Kaiserreich) and printing approval procedures (GDR). When looking at the topic, time-related shifts in focus are also revealing. In the first two decades of the Federal Republic of Germany, the subject of National Socialism was subject to strong reservations, taboos and restrictions. Likewise, the representation of sexuality as well as life plans that were viewed by the majority as morally or socially disreputable (such as prostitution ). In the 1970s and 1980s, it was primarily the handling of taboos staged by the media and left, system-critical publications that dominated the picture. Finally, the censorship debates of the 1990s and 2000s were heavily influenced by the use of the new media ( video , DVD , computer games , internet ) and the subject of violence . The topics of freedom of the press and protection of personality also raised significant controversies. Some judgments that put the protection of personal rights above that of artistic freedom, in particular, caused discussion . Outstanding example: the Esra case - a book by the author Maxim Biller , whose prohibition confirmed by the Federal Constitutional Court in 2007 led to ongoing controversy.

Laws and institutions

The handling of basic democratic elements such as freedom of the press, freedom of opinion and freedom of art was an important question when the Federal Republic of Germany was founded. It was taken into account primarily by the Basic Law that came into force in 1949. The first question that arose in the concrete formulation of the constitutional principles was how to distinguish them from their legal predecessors. In spirit, the fathers of the Basic Law orientated themselves strongly to the guidelines of the Weimar Republic. The practice of the Third Reich, which also practiced almost total conformity in the area of ​​the media , was to be replaced by legally guaranteed pluralism . In addition, important parameters were already given by the practice of the occupying powers . In 1945 the first newspaper licenses were issued in the British , US and Soviet zones of occupation . Cabarets , entertainment events as well as theaters and publishers - which were heavily influenced by returning exiles - had already set the course. Likewise, the re- education , which was mainly operated by the Americans. The fact that the arbitrary rule of the National Socialist era was a thing of the past was also underscored by some spectacular trials, such as the Nuremberg Trial of Major War Criminals in 1946.

In practice, in addition to the Basic Law, there were other provisions and institutions. These were either commissioned with the practical implementation of individual provisions or formed independently of it. The freedom of the press, for example, has been specified in numerous versions of the press legislation. In addition, over the years there have been a number of institutions , authorities and associations that have dedicated themselves to certain implementation aspects. The most important are the Federal Testing Agency for Media Harmful to Young People (BPjM; since 1954), the Voluntary Self-Control of the Film Industry (FSK; since 1949), the Broadcasting Council and the German Press Council (since 1956). The freedom of the media received a moral quality through these institutions, which goes beyond the legal claims. This moral-philosophical self-bond as a consequence of freedom makes self-control a question of ethics. Looking at the history of the German media, it should be noted that excessive legal regulation creates the risk of curtailing the control and criticism functions of the media and thus exposing them to censorship.

Legal provisions

The most important legal basis with regard to freedom of expression, freedom of the press and freedom of the arts is Article 5 of the Basic Law (guarantee of freedom of expression ). Since freedom of opinion, freedom of the press and freedom of the arts can conflict with other values ​​(e.g. protection of personality and criminal or civil law), different legal aspects come into play in practice. The most important:

  • Basic Law Article 5. Article 5 (especially here paragraph 1) not only guarantees freedom of opinion, press, reporting and censorship, but also places it in the rank of a constitutional principle . The freedom of art and science are also guaranteed.
  • Personal rights. The general basis is Article 2, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law (guarantee of free development of personality). In actual practice, this affects, among other things, protection against defamation , defamation and demonstrably false statements of fact . Other legal aspects concern copyright , the protection of property and the private sphere.
  • Protection of the free-democratic basic order ; Sedition . The term Freedom Democratic Basic Order (FdGO) can be found in various articles of the Basic Law. In addition, it was specified more precisely in 1952 by the Federal Constitutional Court. In practice, the FdGO functions as a delimitation concept from totalitarian concepts. A special feature of the federal German jurisprudence are clearly formulated criminal offenses in relation to sedition, glorification of the Nazis , the use of symbols of Nazi rule and denial of the Holocaust .
  • Non-discrimination . Discrimination based on origin , skin color , gender or other characteristics is not only increasingly outlawed in public discourse. Laws to limit discrimination derivedfrom Article 3 of the Basic Law (“All people are equal”) are playingan increasing role, especially within the European Union .
  • Youth protection laws. The Youth Protection Act (JuSchG), which was amended in major aspects in 2002, and the State Treaty on Youth Media Protection ( JMStV) contain numerous special regulations with regard to children and young people . In addition to general aspects such as visiting restaurants , it also affects restricted forms of media consumption - particularly with regard to the representation of sexuality and violence. In practice, the different age ratings of the FSK also play a decisive role here.
  • Provisions for the protection of religious creeds, as well as marriage and family . The constitutionally guaranteed freedom of belief ( Article 4 GG, freedom of belief and conscience ) also repeatedly collides in practice with the right to freedom of expression (especially in the case of satirical representations, which are often viewed as derogatory by believers). The so-called moral legislation - i.e. the regulations regarding which behavior and which publications can be viewed as appropriate in public - has fundamentally changed since the late 1960s. Pornography is still subject to certain restrictions - especially in its harder forms.
  • Criminal offenses. Criminal offenses such as human trafficking and child pornography are clearly sanctioned. This also applies to publications that support them or even function as part of the “consumer offer”.
  • Security laws. The aspect of " internal security " has come into play in different ways since the Federal Republic of Germany was founded: as a procedure by state authorities against declaimed secrecy - and treason (best known example: the Spiegel affair in 1962), as a legal restriction of the publication practice in the course of the fight against terrorism since 1968 ( membership in a terrorist organization ; Paragraphs 129 and 129a StGB ) and as general modifications of legal practice due to Islamist terrorist attacks that have taken place or are feared .
  • Internet law . The legal provisions regulating publications on online sites have been playingan increasingly important roleat least since the millennium . Important legal aspects, some of which are controversial, are the question of responsibility for externally linked sites or questions of trademark protection . Due to the technical dynamics of the medium, many believe that greater control is necessary. Others, on the other hand, state that the mediumguaranteesa special degree of freedom and self-fulfillment , which should be retained and further expanded.
  • Copyright. Generally speaking, copyright regulates the protection of intellectual property . Copyright also plays a role again and again in the debate about the framework and limits of freedom of art and publication. Examples: the disputes over websites that prove plagiarism in diploma theses , and the novel Axolotl Roadkill .


In the censorship discourse in the Federal Republic of Germany, as early as the early 1950s, a number of institutions emerged that provided support in structuring the publication and media landscape. State institutions such as public prosecutors and courts should also be listed. As a rule, however, these have only been active in special cases so far. On the other hand, civil law disputes are more common, for example over certain content of certain publications. The main institutions:

  • Public prosecutor's offices, in individual cases also the state interior ministers. State authorities are authorized by law to take action against publications and media products whose content violates applicable laws. Apart from the topic of political extremism, investigative proceedings by the public prosecutor play a rather secondary role. Most important sanctions: prohibition orders, confiscations ; In individual cases criminal investigations and sanctions against individual persons.
  • Civilian courts ( ex -, country -, Courts of Appeal , Federal Court , Federal Constitutional Court ). Civil law disputes can also have serious consequences with regard to the appearance of a book, film or other media product. The most important legal remedy here is the injunction. However, authors, publishers or film producers can appeal against this, so that the preliminary injunctions - at least in theory - only have a suspensive character. The potential consequences of civil law disputes are broad: They range from the blackening of certain passages in the text to judicial bans.
  • The Federal Testing Office for Media Harmful to Young People (BPjM). The Federal Testing Office, founded in 1954 (formerly: Federal Testing Office for Writings Harmful to Young People, BPjS), initially subordinated to the Ministry of the Interior and later to the Ministry of Family Affairs and based in Bonn , is responsible for potential indexes and, as an extreme measure, can also initiate bans on publications. Legal predecessors were a set of laws from the Weimar Republic that was modified during the Nazi era - the law to protect young people from junk and dirty writing from 1926. The new basis was the law passed in 1953 on the dissemination of writings harmful to young people. All important social groups are represented in the BPjM. According to its self-image, it serves to protect minors in the media . The examination takes place on application - whereby the group of possible applicants in practice extends far beyond the official youth welfare agency. Most important means of sanction: inclusion in the list of indexed media. Contrary to popular belief, this does not constitute a ban on the work.
FSK headquarters: the German Film House in Wiesbaden
FSK certification since December 1st, 2008
  • The Voluntary Self-Control of the Film Industry (FSK). It has existed since 1949. The seat of the FSK is the Hessian capital Wiesbaden . The FSK is supported by the leading organizations of the film industry ( SPIO ), an umbrella organization to which around 1,100 member companies belong. The legal basis of the age indexes carried out by the FSK is the Youth Protection Act. Current indexes are FSK-0 (unrestrictedly released), FSK-6, FSK-12, FSK-16 and FSK-18. The FSK labels also apply to the sale of videos and games. In practice, the last two levels in particular (approved from 16 or 18 years of age) lead to more or less significant restrictions on the presentation or distribution - for example in the context of TV broadcasts (where TV stations regularly cut off objectionable scenes help) or when selling . Most important sanctions: no FSK approval; FSK approval from 18.
  • The Broadcasting Council (at ZDF : TV Council). The broadcasting councils assigned to the individual ARD stations as well as the ZDF television council are supervisory bodies that are supposed to ensure the fulfillment of the statutory broadcasting mandate of the public broadcasters . Introduced with the founding of ARD are in it, both representatives of the parliamentary represented parties represented and representatives of other major stakeholders. In practice, this umbrella body has a not inconsiderable influence on programs and personnel decisions of the individual institutions. The, in the opinion of critics, excessive orientation towards the programs of the private broadcasters and the increased influence of parties on the editorial business caused controversy in some cases . Example: the dismissal of the longtime ZDF editor-in-chief Nikolaus Brender . Sanctions: none, since - at least in terms of the objective - only acts as an adviser.
  • The German Press Council . Similar to the FSK, the German Press Council is a body established by various professional associations. The press council monitors compliance with general journalistic principles. It is based on a report prepared by the Press Council Press Code . The complaint procedure is comparatively informal and can, at least in principle, be used by every citizen. The most important sanction is the reprimand . Public reprimands - at least that is the voluntary commitment of the publishers represented in the press council - must be printed in the corresponding medium. The number of reprimands issued has been around 20 per year in recent years. In view of the continually controversial tabloid journalism , many critics consider the reprimand to be inadequate. The most important means of sanction: the public reprimand.

In addition to the institutions listed, there are a few others that are primarily active in the field of television and games / new media. Functioning and tasks are more or less similar to those of the FSK. In detail, these are: the voluntary self-regulation television (FSF), the voluntary self-regulation multimedia service provider (FSM) and the entertainment software self-regulation (USK). In addition to the institutions that are officially involved in indexing and approvals, there are numerous interest groups that are also involved in the media, entertainment and art sectors. Important interest groups here are the two churches , which contain their own assessment institutes and in the past made sometimes controversial recommendations or warnings. On the Catholic side these are, for example, the film-dienst (formerly: Katholischer Filmdienst), on the Protestant side, the film magazine epd Film and other publications issued by the Protestant press service . In addition, there are numerous associations and initiatives that have dedicated themselves to certain media or certain aspects of one or more media. Depending on their orientation, they also take different positions with regard to freedom of publication. Points of conflict are above all the depiction of violence (or the still tolerable extent of depictions of violence) and the depiction of sexual acts. The Catholic Volkswartbund played an extremely controversial role in the first decades of the Federal Republic of Germany , not only leading numerous campaigns against the - in its opinion threatening - moral decline , but also filing hundreds of applications for indexing with the BPjS.

to form

In practice, the range of intervention options that can be classified under the term censorship is quite different. It ranges from bans and public prosecutor's investigations to graduated forms of sales restrictions ( indexing , age rating ) to injunctions and civil actions . So far there have only been bans on the part of the state interior ministers in a few individual cases. In contrast, so-called indexes are common. Another means of limiting is staggered age ratings. There are also regular accusations of censorship on the occasion of temporary injunctions against certain works. On the one hand, the injunction is a means of civil criminal law. On the other hand, publishers , authors , journalists and media scholars criticize the fact that injunctions are an elegant means of practically preventing the publication of undesired content. Finally, the techniques that can be used to implement the listed measures are also different. They range from absolute publication bans and restricted publication bans (approved from 18) to film cuts , text blackening and bars over faces or gender characteristics . Absolute prohibitions, for which even possession is punishable, have so far only been used in a few cases. Simple prohibitions are a little more common - usually combined with the confiscation of the relevant requirement. The following forms of sanctions are used to prohibit, index, restrict or release publications or media in a modified form:

  • The confiscation. As a rule, a seizure is initiated on the basis of the following laws: Section 86a of the Criminal Code (use of symbols of unconstitutional organizations), Section 90 of the Criminal Code (denigration of the state and its symbols), Section 130 of the Criminal Code (sedition), Section 130a of the Criminal Code (instructions on criminal offenses ) , § 131 StGB ( representation of violence ), § 184a StGB (distribution of violent or animal pornographic writings), § 184b StGB (distribution, acquisition and possession of child pornographic writings), § 185 StGB ( insults ) and § 187 StGB ( defamation ). Furthermore, the anti-terror paragraphs § 88 and § 129a StGB (advertising for a criminal or terrorist organization) repeatedly gave rise to seizures and bans. Executing authority: i. d. R. Public Prosecutors, Police.
  • The ban. In practice it is difficult to differentiate between the terms confiscation and prohibition. As a rule, confiscated media are only prohibited from being distributed or otherwise made accessible. Ownership, on the other hand, is - with very few exceptions - impunity. Executing authority: Justice or, in special cases, the state interior ministers.
  • The indexing. In contrast to the prohibition, indexing only means a sales restriction. In practice, however, this is serious. It includes advertising and exhibition bans, TV broadcasting bans and, in some cases, considerable restrictions in mail order. In addition, the BPjM can recommend or approve seizures. The following are automatically indexed: a) seized media, b) pornographic media. Executing institution: the Federal Testing Office for Media Harmful to Young People (BPjM).
  • The age rating. In contrast to indexing, corresponding age ratings (FSK-18 or no rating) have less drastic consequences. The FSK approval is just an identification label. In practice, they are a warning to dealers, distributors or cinemas not to make certain films or videos accessible to young people. FSK awards also play a role in the broadcast dates on TV. Films from 4pm or 6pm on free TV will only be shown after 10pm. The FSK label is not mandatory. However, the status “without approval” has considerable disadvantages in terms of sales and almost always leads to indexing. Executing institution: the voluntary self-regulation of the film industry (FSK).
  • Blacking out, making certain passages unrecognizable (for example by means of so-called "censor bars") and changes to the work. The funds listed are used in the area of print media . As a rule, they are the result of civil actions, injunctions or copyright infringements. Occasionally, they also come to the train to avoid possible arguments. Legally speaking, the causative authority: in most cases civil law.
  • The separation of politically problematic sides, e.g. B. the National Socialist entries 1934 to 1945 from the steel book (Golden Book) of the city of Essen, so that it could be used again in the Federal Republic.
RAF co-founder Ulrike Meinhof as a young journalist (around 1964)

In addition to the types of sanctions listed, more informal forms of information suppression are repeatedly criticized. In the course of the 1968 movement and the disputes with the Red Army Faction (RAF) in the 1970s, there were bitter disputes over the question of freedom of publication. The third Russell Tribunal (1977–1979), which was controversial because of its composition, criticized the federal German state organs as being strongly repressive and noted a lack of actual freedom of expression, particularly freedom of expression that was critical of the system. In recent years, the term informal censorship has also appeared in different contexts. It mainly refers to the "scissors in the head" - that is, the voluntary, anticipated adaptation self-censorship based on assumed or actual power relations. In view of this balance of power, the question arises as to how secure the freedom of opinion, publication and artistic freedom actually is in the Federal Republic. Critics see a particular danger in view of the increasing, more and more impenetrable private sector media concentration . Another aspect, according to critics close to the union in particular , is the associated low wages - an aspect that also does not get along well with unhindered expression of opinion.


Since the founding of the Federal Republic of Germany, the contradiction between the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of opinion and artistic freedom and social, legal and state practice has caused a variety of different conflicts. A large number concerned the interpretation of the right to freedom of expression, that is, the directly political area. In addition, numerous artistic products - controversial books , plays, comics , films and music productions - provided regular material for arguments . What examiners, citizens or public prosecutors perceived as offensive and accordingly imposed with different sanctions fluctuates. A sensitive topic in the first two decades of the Federal Republic , for example, was the treatment of the Nazi past . In addition, many products that dealt with sexuality or otherwise (measured by social standards) displayed too liberal thinking came under verdict.

In the 1970s and 1980s, there was a more or less clear shift in focus. In terms of sex, general liberalization brought about a fundamental change (keyword: pornography approval); (: Tag on the subject of violence a higher tolerance level from recorded already in the 1960s spaghetti westerns -wave). Political statements, texts critical of the system and satires called the forces of order on the scene more than in the previous decades. Despite these accompanying circumstances, the decade is viewed positively by many: in the sense that the right to political and artistic expression has been exhausted far more than in previous decades. Another paradigm shift emerged with the introduction of private television and the emergence of new media formats such as video cassette, DVD, video games and the Internet. The violence and moral thresholds that changed in the 1970s came back into the discussion. Another factor that caused disputes in the new millennium was the increasing assertion of personal rights - a development that was taken into account by important courts such as the Federal Constitutional Court, but is viewed with great concern by representatives of publishers and authors.

1948 to 1970

New edition banned until 2016: German first edition of the first volume of Mein Kampf , July 1925.

The Allied Control Council , the supreme body of the Allied occupation administration, had already implemented some groundbreaking parameters in terms of dealing with newspapers , literature , film, music and theater . The licenses for operating newspapers and other publications, for example, were largely based on the criterion of democratic reliability. In this way, a largely pluralistic press landscape was able to establish itself in the western zones . Example: the news magazine Der Spiegel , which was founded in 1947. Another aspect was the re-education efforts of the first post-war years . The occupation authorities searched the holdings of public libraries for Nazi literature , for example for novels by prominent writers such as Ulrich Sander , Hans Grimm and Josef Ponten . Adolf Hitler's Mein Kampf was subject to a publication ban until 2016 because the copyrights were held by the Bavarian state government . The regulations with regard to the second part and Alfred Rosenberg's The Myth of the 20th Century are less clear . Neither are explicitly forbidden, but are not distributed.

Josefine Mutzenbacher : My 365 lovers . First edition of the second volume (1925)

The first indexes and bans mostly concerned new editions and re-editions of erotic literature . In the early 1950s, numerous works of the genre were placed on the BPjS index and are now classics. For example, the novel Geschichte der O by Dominique Aury , the (presumably fictional) biography of the Viennese prostitute Josefine Mutzenbacher and the works of Marquis de Sade ( Justine , The 120 Days of Sodom ). The indexing of the Mutzenbacher book was confirmed in several instances and was not canceled until 1990. Other works that ranked among the classics of erotic literature were also indexed well beyond the 1970s.

The republic had its first sex scandal in 1951 with the film Die Sünderin with Hildegard Knef in the leading role. The FSK initially refused to release it and only released it after crisis meetings. Churches and conservative associations ran a storm against the film and subsequently obtained a series of performance bans, which, however, did not last.

The Billy Wilder film Some Like It Hot was fully indexed in 1959 . Quotation from the reasoning: “The film has immoral possibilities due to its 'mobility' alone that are not available to any other entertainment medium. As a clear example I can just cite Some Like It Hot, where in one scene the lovely Marilyn is undressed and dressed and undressed again simply by diving up and down in the spotlight. ” In addition, titles were indexed, their portrayal of morality or violence from the point of view the indexing was questionable. Example: some novels by US crime writer Mickey Spillane such as Me, the Judge (1953) and Kiss Me, Death (1954). In 1959, Wladimir Nabokov's novel Lolita and Günter Grass Tin Drum also attracted controversies about their freedom of movement . Both could appear; However, numerous criminal charges were received against Grass's Tin Drum.

The Nazi past was a hot topic well into the 1950s. The film Casablanca (1942), which featured prominently with the film stars Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman , initially only came to the cinemas with clear cuts and changes in synchronization . Scenes with allusions to World War II and National Socialists have been removed; The resistance fighter Victor László, played by Paul Henreid , had become an apolitical nuclear researcher. Erich Maria Remarque's novel Time to Live and Time to Die was also reworked according to the course of the Cold War front . In contrast, the film adaptation of the Remarque novel In the West Nothing New was restored and the original version was broadcast in 1963 - unlike in France and Austria , where the film was banned entirely until 1963 and the 1980s, respectively. Despite the scandal, the 1963 film Das Schweigen by Ingmar Bergman was not indexed . Due to the scandal: unusual natural depicted sexual intercourse - and masturbation scenes .

Films from socialist countries were also censored. To this end, the Interministerial Committee for East-West Film Issues was founded, which banned the import of around 130 films from 1953 to 1966.

Will McBride and Model (1975). His educational brochure Show me! from 1974 should be indexed in 1996 at the request of the youth welfare office in Frankfurt am Main, the work was accused of pornography.

In the 1960s, the fight for a clean screen shifted increasingly to the genre of moral and educational films . In contrast to the custom films that were already popular during the Weimar Republic, some of which only served voyeuristic inclinations, the new educational films came up with an educational, sexual science claim. A well-known example was the educational film You - Zwischenzeichen der Sexualität (1968), against which the FSK repeatedly intervened. After a seizure action in a Hamburg cinema, the ban on you finally led to a constitutional lawsuit against the FSK. Another film that the FSK objected to and only came into the cinemas after clear cuts was Oswalt Kolles For Example Adultery (1969). Some educational works in book form also sparked protests and attempts to index. The 1969 published by Health Minister Kate Strobel issued sex education Atlas was part of the Minister of Education initially not the countries for lessons released. Public prosecutor's investigations, indexing and protests also resulted in some educational publications from the context of the 68 movement. A public prosecutor's proceeding was brought against Sex Front author Günter Amendt , which was only discontinued in 1980. Will McBride's photo book Show me! , going in a similar direction in terms of content and published by the Jugenddienst Verlag , which is closely related to the Evangelical Church , was not attempted to be indexed until 22 years after it was published. Applicant: the Frankfurt Youth Welfare Office , which classified McBride's photos as "hard pornography".

Rudolf Augstein at the FDP federal party conference in 1980

The Spiegel affair in 1962 developed into a major political scandal over the question of freedom of expression and publication in the early 1960s. The occasion was a Spiegel report that addressed the defense capabilities of the Federal Republic of Germany and controversial details about the role of the then Defense Minister Franz Josef Contained ostrich . The affair culminated in a search of the Spiegel editorial offices in Hamburg and the arrest of publisher Rudolf Augstein and other Spiegel employees. It culminated in charges of treason and a prison sentence for Augstein. The affair led to sharp protests at the time and is seen in retrospect as the most significant attack by German state organs on independent press media. A case that was brought to a conclusion in 1971 by a judgment of the Federal Constitutional Court (BVerfG) - the so-called Mephisto decision - had far-reaching effects with regard to the weighting of personal protection versus freedom from literature . The occasion was Klaus Mann's novel Mephisto - Novel of a Career from 1936, which, as a novel in the clef, dealt critically with the career of the actor Gustaf Gründgens during the Nazi era. In the last instance, the BVerfG confirmed the prohibition issued in 1966 on the grounds that the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of art was subject to restrictions - namely those that result from other fundamental rights.

Johnny Cash (1969)

The emerging 1968 movement was - at least until the double year 1968/69, which was assessed as a radicalization threshold, and the confrontations related to terrorism in the following decade - little confronted with the topic of censorship. The youth , rock and hippie culture spreading at the same time is different . The Munich trade supervisory office, for example, obtained some content-related conditions against the musical Hair 1968: The fornication of acts of sexual immorality was indicated by some people rolling around on the floor . These are to be omitted; otherwise the theatrical performance would be downgraded to a revue requiring approval. In the end, the arguments were inconclusive, and Hair was classified as a play, that is, art that should not be censored. Comparable restrictions played mostly in the informal sector as well as of - about the criticism of outraged opinion viewers to short-rated mini skirt of Beat-Club presenter Uschi Nerke , sending boycotts of certain rock music titles or subsequently blameless designed record covers . Many of these interventions can be traced back to precautionary measures taken by Anglo-Saxon or international sales companies - for example the censorship of individual swear words on recordings. Well-known example: the song A Boy named Sue on the Johnny Cash live album At San Quentin , where the word "Bitch" was played over with a beep.

The review of comics was the main focus of the Federal Inspectorate's activity, especially at the time the Federal Inspectorate began work. At the first hearing on July 9, 1954, five comics were negotiated. These were the booklets with the numbers 19 and 20 by Pecos Bill , the booklets with the numbers 34 and 35 by Tarzan as well as the booklet number 12 of Der kleine Sheriff , all of which were published by Mondial Verlag. The little sheriff alone was indexed. In addition, issue number 3 of the series Jezab, the seafarer from Walter Lehning Verlag was indexed by means of an injunction . The indexing was announced on July 14, 1954 in the Federal Gazette No. 132. However, they did not have any immediate effects, as the relevant issues had already been sold. The indexing of Jezab, the seafarer , was confirmed in the subsequent meeting. In the first years of the Federal Inspectorate's activity, the majority of the indexed publications were comics; mostly because of the pictorial representation of violence. In addition to Alfons Semrau Verlag , Walter Lehning Verlag was particularly affected . Smaller publishers were not affected, or at most with one issue. The discussion of permanent indexes resulted in the discontinuation of a total of four comic series. Another consequence of the indexing was the establishment of the voluntary self-regulation for serial pictures in 1955 by the publishers. However, since the quality seal awarded by this control institution did not provide effective protection against indexing, its work was discontinued. When the number of indexes of comics decreased in the second half of the 1950s, the institutions opposed to comics such as the Volkswartbund and the Deutsche Jugendschriftenwerk reacted by staging book burnings and landfills (so-called “book graves”).

1970 to 1990

Anaïs Nin in the 1970s

Between 1965 and 1975, attitudes towards sexual issues changed fundamentally. The reasons for this are assessed differently to this day: Partly they are presented as the result of the 1968 youth movement, partly as an inevitable intermediate step towards a modern service society . One of the side effects of this liberalization was the so-called sex wave , which was a regular topic well into the 1970s, even before the barriers of the judiciary. An important question in these countless small-scale disputes was the representation of secondary or primary gender characteristics - for example on magazine titles, in magazines or posts focused on the topic of sex such as the St. Pauli-Nachrichten, founded in 1968 . Important legal milestones towards liberalization were the extensive release of pornographic content by a Federal Supreme Court ruling in 1969 (“Fanny Hill” ruling) and the release of pornography in 1975, which from then on was only subject to youth law restrictions. In the course of this liberalization, a legally operating sex industry gradually established itself - in some cases with actors who, like the Italian porn director Lasse Braun , tried to bring aesthetic standards to the industry.

Leading actress in the western The Lullaby of Homicide : Candice Bergen (1990)

Regardless of social liberalization, films and books with sexual representations were regularly indexed in the 1970s. This did not apply to the pseudo-documentary report films based on the pattern of the successful schoolgirl report series, which is only indicated in individual cases . In particular, titles that deliberately staged the breaking of taboos led to scandals and sometimes also to indexing. Examples: the films The Last Tango in Paris (1972), Liliana Cavani's The Night Porter (1974), Francis Girod's Trio Infernal , the film adaptation of the novel The Story of O (1975), Pier Paolo Pasolini's controversial de Sade film The 120 Days von Sodom (1975) and Nagisa Ōshimas In the Realm of the Senses (1976). Tinto Brass also experienced drastic cuts in the Nazi brothel epic Salon Kitty from 1976. In addition, some films that contained drastic depictions of violence were granted FSK-18 approvals and / or editing requirements - sometimes even if the depiction of violence arose for politically reputable reasons. Example: the US Western Soldier Blue from 1970 with Candice Bergen , whose finale is a massacre of the US Army in peaceful Cheyenne - Indians set in 1864 in the limelight. There were comparatively few complaints with the US underground sex film Deep Throat with Linda Lovelace (1973). In New York and other cities with a performance ban and threats of fines, it ran largely undisturbed in German train stations and scene cinemas - as did the reflective film documentary Inside Deep Throat from 2005.

There were indexes up to seizure actions in the 1970s and 1980s on the occasion of some spectacular novel publications. Henry Miller's Opus Pistorum put the Federal Inspectorate on the index in 1988. Miller's posthumously published work, published by Rowohlt Verlag , was seized in 1987 in a large-scale confiscation. Around 700 police officers were involved in the operation ; 285 bookshops were affected . Five years later, the test center removed the Miller entry from their list. The Federal Court of Justice also dealt with the work in 1990 and ruled that art and pornographic representations do not have to be mutually exclusive in every case. Other indexed titles: Lola - Erotic Variations (reason: detailed description of gender characteristics), Massimissa or Die Lust der Freiheit (reason: incest depiction) and Emmanuelle Arsan's second Emmanuelle book (all three: 1986).

March publisher Jörg Schröder (Berlin, 2009)

In a number of cases, injunctions and civil suits also proved to be an obstacle to publication. A well-known example is the autobiographical novel Siegfried by March publisher Jörg Schröder from 1972. The result was blackened parts and numerous new editions. The temporary VS chairman Bernt Engelmann was also on trial for denigration . Occasion: the fact-based novel Great Federal Cross of Merit (1975). Reason: Fritz Ries , CEO of Pegulan-Werke , saw himself denigrated by Engelmann's book. Conservative forces also regularly focused on some satire and political pamphlets in the wider sphere of the SPD and the 68 movement. The satirical magazine Pardon had received various criminal charges and injunctions since the 1960s. In 1981, pardon, a lawsuit was brought by the Jägermeister manufacturer Curt Mast . Reason: a fake ad with a nine-year-old girl and the text: “I drink Jägermeister because my dealer is currently in jail”. Since Mast insisted on a reply , pardon publisher Henning Venske and draftsman Ernst Volland increased the satire campaign with another advertisement. Text, under the picture of a mother who is breastfeeding her child: "I drink Jägermeister because my mommy is full of it". The satirical magazine Titanic had also been confronted with disputes ranging from confiscations and prohibition orders since the 1980s . Likewise the Heidelberg graphic artist and SPD supporter Klaus Staeck . In 1981 Staeck was involved in a dispute with the armaments company Rheinmetall . Occasion: the use of a company motif in a poster. However, the judges agreed with Staeck and found the use of the motif to be lawful.

Politically, during the 1970s, the confrontation with terrorism and the foothills of the 1968 movement was in the public eye. The lost honor of Katharina Blum , Heinrich Böll's 1974 contribution to the violence debate, was allowed to appear unopposed. As a result, however, Böll faced numerous hostilities. On the other hand, searches and confiscations resulted in some book titles that published original texts from the environment of international or German urban guerrilla groups. Examples: Carlos Marighella's book Zerschlagt die prosperity islands of the Third World (rororo, 1972), the text collection Carry the Class Struggle into the Army ( Trikont-Verlag , 1972) and the publication Kollektiv RAF published by Horst Mahler ( Verlag Klaus Wagenbach , 1971 to 1974) . Even printers - such as Peter-Paul Zahl , who is also known as a writer - were confronted with preliminary investigations, criminal proceedings and confiscations. An unusual measure of solidarity took place in 1976 when the banned book How everything began by Bommi Baumann , a former member of the June 2nd Movement, was re-published by collective editors about 60 publishers and individuals. Another well-known example, which - despite distancing itself from terrorism - resulted in numerous reprisals, was the Mescalero appeal from 1977. Left-wing songwriters and cabaret artists such as B. Franz Josef Degenhardt and Dietrich Kittner were not allowed to be shown on television .

Criminal law paragraphs were also regularly used against publications by the autonomous movement in the 1980s. The periodicals Radikal and Interim, for example, were regularly seized and searched. Instigated by the AOK , the investigators also took action against the brochure Better to celebrate sick than to work healthy in 1981 . Titles from established publishers also faced injunctions and boycotts in the 1970s . Example: the black book Franz-Josef Strauss published by Kiepenheuer & Witsch in 1972 , which was only allowed to continue to be distributed after seven places had been blacked out. Bernt Engelmann's book German Radicals 1777–1977 could appear unobjectionable, but was subsequently confronted with massive book trade boycotts. From the 1970s onwards, the way women were portrayed became more sensitive than before. For these reasons, some record companies explicitly defused the cover design of some releases. Otherwise, the handling of publications from the environment of the women's and alternative movement turned out to be mixed. In 1983, the three book titles Delta der Venus ( Anaïs Nin ), The sexual fantasies of men ( Nancy Friday ) and Joy of Sex ( Alex Comfort ) were confiscated in a seizure. Three years later, Friday's book The Sexual Fantasies of Women was also indexed . Reason: The author reduced human life to sexual enjoyment.

Pop and rock music productions of the 1970s and 1980s were also exposed to different interventions . A number of long-playing records - including by ex - Ihr -Kinder band member Sonny Hennig (Tear Gas , 1971), Alice Cooper ( Single Schools Out, 1972) and the Scorpions ( Virgin Killer , 1976) - only appeared with a defused cover. In 1972 several issues of the youth magazine Bravo landed on the index of the Federal Testing Office. Occasion: the educational series of the magazine as well as the celebrity cult which, in the opinion of the applicant ministerial director from the Bavarian State Ministry, fakes a false world. After hearing an expert , the committee decided on October 6, 1972 to add Bravo to the list of writings harmful to minors. Another sensitive issue in the 1970s was drug use . In 1976 the album Legalize It by the Jamaican reggae star Peter Tosh landed on the index of the federal inspection agency .

Inconsistent seduce the public auditors when dealing with Nazi symbols and expressions suspicious - for example, in the much worn logo of renowned US glam rock - band Kiss . On the other hand, auditors and radio stations had little to complain about with the song A Punk Prayer. The play, a co-recording of the punk band Sex Pistols with British mail robber Ronald Biggs , was banned from airplay in the UK. Occasion: the utterance "God Save Martin Bormann" contained in the lyrics . A number of productions from the New Wave , Punk and Metal corners were affected by indexing in the 1980s . Among other things, several songs and covers of the punk band Die Ärzte ( Geschwisterliebe ; cover of Maxi Gehn wie ein Egyptter, both 1987) were indexed . The sampler Deutschpunk Kampflieder (1989) and Soundtracks zum Untergang (1980) landed on the index . The index was based on the titles Deutschland and Polizei SA-SS of the Hamburg political punk band Slime in Deutschpunk Kampflieder . The soundtracks of the downfall also included Police SA-SS from Slime, as well as the song Helden from Middle Class Fantasies . The new Deutsche Welle hit Jeanny by the Austrian Falco appeared in 1985, after an intervention by the federal inspection agency , in a defused version.

In the area of ​​the indexing of comics, there was a change that comics with sexual content came increasingly into the sights of the federal inspection agency. As a rule, it hit the smaller publishers, such as the Melzer Verlag with Anne and Hans get their chance and The Adventures of Phoebe Zeit-Geist or the Volksverlag with its U-Comix .

Since 1990

The Doctors (Cologne 1998)

After the fall of the Berlin Wall and reunification , more and more new topics emerged. An important topic was the various right-wing rock productions, the number of which increased significantly in the early 1990s. The topic became even more explosive on the occasion of the pogrom-like riots in Rostock and Hoyerswerda . Bands like Landser , Kraft durch Froide and others published openly neo-Nazi and violence propagating texts. A number of right-wing rock productions landed on the index or were banned outright. In 2001 the authorities investigated the Landser band for sedition, the formation of a criminal association and right-wing extremist propaganda. The trial resulted in fines and imprisonment. The Böhsen Onkelz also landed on the index , a band from Frankfurt that was popular beyond the right-wing rock spectrum, but which later distanced itself from right-wing radical ideas.

In the new millennium, too, the issue of violence was a main reason to restrict the distribution of media or, in individual cases, to ban it altogether. It became socially more explosive due to some spectacular rampages - especially the one in Erfurt in 2002 . So-called killer games - for example first-person shooters such as Doom or Counterstrike - came into the focus of the discussion . On the one hand, the discussions mostly remained event-related and subsided after a certain time lag before the event. On the other hand, they showed that the level of violence in some genre productions pushed ever wider limits. In addition to computer games, film and DVD productions in particular were increasingly being targeted by the examiners from the test center and the FSK. In the 1990s and 2000s, numerous films - in particular those from the horror and action genres - were approved with FSK approvals from the age of 18, editing requirements and indexing . In the original version, for example, the films Dobermann , Dawn of the Dead , the German splatter film shocker Dard Divorce and Rob Zombies Halloween - new edition Halloween 2 were indexed . The film companies and DVD distributors circumvented prohibitions and indexing, as a rule, by releasing appropriately edited versions. Beyond splatter movies and the like, the practice of editing films came under the spotlight of critics. A frequent occasion: the common practice, especially among private TV broadcasters, of cutting approved films from the age of 16 so that they can be broadcast before 10 p.m. Since many consumers can often no longer judge which film version they are currently watching, relevant websites are now taking on the task of providing information. In 2002 the Stuttgarter Zeitung explicitly praised the portal Schnittberichte.com , which specializes in harder film genres : “Here you can check what has been snipped away, and you can follow the discussions about the value of the shiver images in the forum. You don't have to agree with the writers, but then you know better what the film censorship debate is about. "

Bushido rapper
Logo from Aggro Berlin

In music productions, the acceptable level of description of violence remained a constant bone of contention. Harder variants of the Metal direction in particular regularly landed on the index. Examples: the bands Anthrax and Cannibal Corpse . The extent and reasons for the respective indexing varied. While Anthrax only indexed the cover of the album Fistful of Metal , Cannibal Corpse indexed records, covers, record inner sleeves and the associated advertising material from several albums and in some cases confiscated them. In addition to the drastic depiction in general, anti-Christian - satanist , in individual cases right-wing extremist statements or statements that trivialized National Socialism offered grounds for indexing. The hip-hop genre, which had established itself as a new youth culture and music direction since the late 1980s, was also confronted with requirements and indexes. In the new millennium, a few rap artists from the environment of the Aggro Berlin label moved into the focus of the federal inspection agency . It indexed several titles by the two rappers Sido and Bushido . In 1996, however, a criminal complaint against the punk band Die Toten Hosen and their song Bonnie & Clyde was not allowed. The judges disagreed with the opinion of one of the Statt-Party members that the song calls for criminal acts.

An increasingly important topic after the turn of the millennium was the Internet - specifically the debate about online content, the associated copyrights and the question of anonymity on the Internet . On the one hand, critics of unrestricted freedom called for regulatory interventions. On the other hand, it has been shown in numerous cases that online media reacted more susceptibly to pressure exerted than established print media. The Internet was particularly explosive as the main arena for specific criminal offenses - particularly in terms of child pornography and in the form of advertising pages for militant Islamism . Discussions about tightening the regulations have so far ended in stalemate due to the controversial political debate. In this debate there was also a dispute about the Access Difficulty Act , which was repealed on December 1, 2011 without prior application, as well as about data retention , which is also interpreted as a restriction of the freedom of the press due to the associated threat to the protection of informants . On the occasion of a demonstration as part of an international day of action in Berlin in 2009, left-wing politician Petra Pau described the data retention as "nonsensical" and warned against a preventive security state. Furthermore, it was discussed to what extent the more difficult access to Internet content would not also have effects similar to censorship . In the wake of these discussions, different groups were formed which - as the lowest common denominator - referred to the freedom of the Internet, such as the internationally active action group Anonymous . The Internet also became explosive in 2009/2010 as an information pool for suppressed, secret or not easily accessible information due to the activities of the WikiLeaks platform and some German platforms such as GuttenPlag , which were involved in the detection of plagiarized dissertations .

Rostock : Demonstration against the G8 summit in Heiligendamm 2007

The contradiction between the public's right to information and the interests of private individuals or institutions was also a regular topic of controversy about censorship in the new millennium. In an affair comparable to the Spiegel affair, a search of the editorial offices of the conservative monthly magazine Cicero grew in 2005 . In an article about the Jordanian terrorist Abu Musab az-Zarqawi , the editors used confidential material from the files of the Federal Criminal Police Office - a fact that the authorities, similar to the Spiegel affair, viewed as treason. The German press defended the legally guaranteed protection of informants and almost consistently criticized the search as an attack on independent journalism. The Federal Constitutional Court ruled on February 27, 2007 that the search had represented a considerable encroachment on the freedom of the press. There were also conflicts between the state and independent journalism at the G8 summit in Heiligendamm in 2007 . The photojournalist Marily Stroux , who worked on behalf of the taz , was refused accreditation without giving any reason . The same thing happened to over 20 other journalists. Stroux was able to win accreditation, but the selective access of the press to an official major political event subsequently caused some criticism.

A new topic - after the attacks of September 11, 2001 - were publications critical of Islam or Islamism. A special censorship debate arose in 2006 when the cartoons critical of Mohammed were published in the Danish daily Jyllands-Posten . The question of whether the representations fall under the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of opinion or freedom of art, or whether they denigrate a certain religion, not only caused a controversial discussion, but also a very different way of dealing with the caricatures themselves. This is how the Austrian crowns printed newspaper , that world , time , FAZ , Tagesspiegel , Berliner Zeitung and taz some of the cartoons, while picture and Spiegel online rejected an imprint. The satirical magazine Titanic commented on the cartoon controversy in its "humor criticism" section. Well-known publicists and journalists also took a stand in this dispute. While the writer Günter Grass described the publication as a planned provocation of a right-wing Danish newspaper, Ulrich Wickert defended Jyllands-Posten in the show Menschen bei Maischberger on February 7, 2006 with the argument that the caricatures in a Danish daily newspaper were also primarily for Danish and were not intended for Muslim readers, as the proportion of the Muslim population in Denmark is very small. The publicist and Henryk M. Broder attacked the cartoon controversy in his controversial book Hurray, we capitulate! in which he sharply criticized the violent reactions from parts of the Muslim world and described the handling of parts of the Western public as appeasement . A minor follow-up debate with the same content triggered the cancellation of the opera Idomeneo at the Deutsche Oper in Berlin in September 2006. The dismissal was justified by the director Kirsten Harms with incalculable risks of Islamist acts of violence. There were concrete threats in advance. After violent public protests, however, the opera was put back on the program in December 2006 and performed again in the unabridged, original version.

In several known cases after 2000, preliminary injunctions, actual or threatened civil suits ensured that a work was not published, withdrawn from the market or even banned. The best-known case is the novel Esra by Maxim Biller from 2003. After publication, the Munich Regional Court ruled that the novel should not appear in a defused version either. Trigger: An ex-girlfriend of the author and her mother felt that their personal rights had been violated and sued against publication. In the final instance, the BVerfG also confirmed the ban on the novel in 2007. At the same time, the Munich Regional Court sentenced Biller and his publisher to pay compensation for pain and suffering. The years of lawsuits surrounding Biller's novel ultimately led to the situation that the judgment on damages was revised in the final instance, but the ban on books was confirmed. The story of a book and a film about Armin Meiwes, described by the press as the “cannibal of Rotenburg”, was similarly changeable . Günter Stampf's book Interview with a Cannibal (2007) was finally reissued in a different form. Martin Weisz's film Rohtenburg was initially banned from performance. A revision decision by the Federal Court of Justice released the film again in 2009. The autobiographical novel Havermann by Florian Havemann was withdrawn from Suhrkamp Verlag in 2007 . Reason: Havemann had portrayed his father, the well-known GDR oppositionist Robert Havemann and other people in a less favorable light. Other cases in which private individuals saw themselves inappropriately portrayed and acted against book titles: the novel End of a Night (Romy Schneider) by Olaf Kraemer from 2008, Dieter Wedel's book Vom Schöne Schein und Real Leben (2010), Jörg Immendorff's Biography (2010 ) and the novel Das Da-Da-Da-Sein by the music journalist Maik Brüggemeyer (2011).

Media from the autonomous movement such as the Zeck , Interim and Prisma were also banned and confiscated . As of January 2010, the Berlin public prosecutor's office also investigated bookshops that displayed publications for the first time on the grounds of aiding and abetting instructions on criminal offenses and violating the weapons law . In the course of the investigation, there were several searches and seizures. On June 9, 2010, the Berlin judiciary had the business premises of the Berlin Internet provider JP Berlin searched, on whose server a PDF copy of the Prisma posted by the customer “projektwerkstatt.de” was found, and it confiscated computers and hard drives.

Erika Lust (2010)

The fine arts , as the domain of high culture, have remained largely unmolested since the Federal Republic of Germany was founded. Borderline cases in which the judiciary was involved were the action art by Otto Muehl at the end of the 1960s , some pictures by the painter Blalla W. Hallmann interpreted as anti-Christian and the dispute over the extradition of the Zurich graffiti painter Harald Naegeli to Switzerland . The case of a civil suit against the Dresden painter Erika Lust aroused supraregional media coverage in 2009 . The Lord Mayor of Dresden, Helma Orosz , saw her personal rights violated in a picture by the artist about the controversial Elbe Bridge dispute and initially obtained a public exhibition ban for the picture. In 2010 the exhibition ban was revised in a court decision. Under the title “How the German Censorship Vice World Champions became”, Spiegel Online reported on another aspect of censorship in 2010: German authorities rank second in terms of deletion and user data requests on the Google video portal YouTube and other platforms - directly behind Brazil . Since Google.de has also implemented the BPjM's index lists, the media journalist Burkhard Schröder recommended using the internationalized Google version Google.com for Internet searches.

Research into the topic and content-related controversies

Complete overviews

From an empirical point of view, research into the subject of censorship in the Federal Republic of Germany has to contend with various obstacles. On the one hand, there is a wide range of literature, also with regard to listing specific cases. The detection of the case level is made more difficult by the different definition options. An extreme pole here is the succinct statement that censorship does not take place for the reason that Art. 5 GG excludes it. The media scientist Roland Seim is of the opinion that this only applies to the classic previous censorship, which has actually been abolished in democracies. He regards the fact that censorship can be discussed in democratic societies as clear qualitative progress. Seim also takes a critical view of the second extreme pole: that in the censorship discourse numerous events are rated as censorship which, from the factual level, belong more to the area of ​​normal social disputes - for example, the content-related discussion of a controversial book or a controversial music production. In order to determine the existence and extent of censorship interventions, Seim included in his book Between Media Freedom and Censorship Interventions the social environment in which certain measures come into play. likewise the preliminary level of informal censorship and self-censorship. In contrast to more extreme critics such as Werner Pieper , who advocate a very extensive abolition of restrictive measures, the question of state intervention arises for some types of publication - for example in the area of ​​right-wing extremist publications as well as in areas that border on certain criminal offenses (child pornography, extreme violence, Pornography in general). Other authors who have presented the topic beyond current events are Matthias L. Lorenz, Beate Müller and Hans. J. Schütz.

The aggravating factor in narrowing down the topic is German history - in this specific case, the handling of censorship interventions in the German Empire, the Weimar Republic, the Third Reich, the GDR and the Federal Republic of Germany. On the one hand, the background, intention and extent of interference in the five listed legal structures are extremely different. On the other hand, they contain a number of continuities - for example the Volkswartbund founded in 1927 and the Dirt and Trash Act (1926), which served as a template for the adoption of the law on the dissemination of writings harmful to young people (1954). Differences and similarities in the German censorship history are still the subject of research. Likewise, the classification in a larger framework such as the European or even worldwide history of censorship .

Individual topics in discussion

In addition to fundamental aspects, individual aspects of the topic repeatedly come to the fore in the social discussion. The following sub-areas in particular are extensively documented in non-fiction and specialist literature as well as contemporary media reporting:

  • the Adenauer era of the early Federal Republic (1950s, 1960s), perceived as prudish and above-average restrictive
  • Aspects of self-censorship and politically motivated censorship (1970s)
  • the debate about the question of pornography ( PorNO campaign since the 1980s)
  • the topic of new media and violence (since the 1980s)
  • Restriction of media freedom due to extensively interpreted personal rights as well as current tendencies towards the " security state " (from the second half of the 2000s)
  • the balance between freedom of expression and religious sentiments
Pornography Controversy: Altporn -Model (2011)

The discussion about the taboo and restriction of the representation of sexual topics goes back to the early years of the Federal Republic. In the contemporary censorship debate of the Adenauer era, among other things, the Volkswartbund, which emerged through numerous indexing applications (today: Catholic Federal Working Group for Youth Protection eV ), took part. In 2011 the political scientist and historian Sybille Steinbacher published a study focused on three exemplary cases (The Sinner, the contemporary reception of the Kinsey Report and the development of the Beate Uhse Group ) . In an interview with Deutschlandradio Kultur , she reiterated her conclusion that the prudish climate of the first decades in West Germany was largely due to the influence of circles close to the church: “It was precisely the Catholic Church, which succeeded in doing so after the Second World War, more than to stylize the evangelical as a victor in ruins, and she has always occupied the field of morality, sexual morality anyway, and here she once again took on a very special power of interpretation after the Second World War. It was the theologians, it was the scientists, the natural scientists above all, who occupied the subject area of ​​sexuality. And from this point of view, also supported by politics, in the end, if you will, a state program for the protection of morality was started. "

In the 1970s, there was a strong focus on aspects of political censorship. The subject of the "scissors in the head", that is, the anticipatory self-censorship, was also widely discussed. The domestic political and police measures to combat terrorism had particularly polarizing effects. The Third International Russell Tribunal, which explicitly addressed the situation in the Federal Republic of Germany, came to the following conclusion in 1979: “In fact, there is no official censorship body in the Federal Republic. Nevertheless, censorship takes place in a variety of areas. An important instrument for this unofficial censorship for the state is the legislative paragraphs passed in the 1970s, such as B. Sections 88a and 130a of the Criminal Code, which are intended to serve 'community peace', but actually make scientific and literary statements about violence suspect themselves. [...] As the range of officially and semi-officially permitted expressions of opinion threatens to be narrowed more and more by the censorship measures, the danger arises of a division of society. The normal and ruling part that conforms and the marginalized part of the minorities. "

Regarding the topic of sexual representation and the closely related question of pornography, feminist views have increasingly made their voice heard since the 1980s. In part, they also subjected the liberalization tendencies of the 1960s and 1970s to clear criticism - especially with regard to the representation of the female body. The Emma editor Alice Schwarzer takes an exemplary position . Based on studies by the American suffragette and sociologist Andrea Dworkin , the supporters of the PorNO campaign point out that the depiction of the female body in a sexist context includes degradation and thus violence against women. In 1978, Schwarzer brought an injunction against Stern magazine and its publisher Henri Nannen , also known as the sexism lawsuit , which was not upheld. The PorNO initiative initiated by Schwarzer in 1987 aims at an extensive or even complete ban on pornography, whereby the term pornography is to be redefined in a law to be created. Schwarzer's position is controversial in the feminist discussion. The publisher Claudia Gehrke , among others, who publishes the book series My secret eye in her bankruptcy book publishing house, was critical of this . The PorNO campaign was also criticized by some sex worker organizations and younger feminists.

The two institutions that have the greatest impact on indexing and restrictions on distribution and performance are regularly criticized, but usually do not take part in the debate on censorship. The Federal Testing Office for Media Harmful to Young People publishes paperbacks and brochures on a regular basis - mainly on the subject of media and violence. On its website, the test center primarily focuses on organizational aspects. In addition, a number of specialist papers and legal statements are published online, which usually reflect the positions of the Federal Testing Office or support them with arguments. The situation is similar with the institutions of voluntary self-regulation. On the other hand, there are public statements from a number of people and association members who have spoken out in favor of stricter regulation in the areas of horror film, certain types of music and computer games. The main argument of those in favor of indexing is that the depiction of violence in films or the violent scenario of games ultimately results in a disinhibiting, brutalizing effect that must be countered by indexing. The commitment of the Saarbrücken teacher and member of the Green Party, Christa Jenal, to indexing violent metal music ultimately led to a discussion in the magazine Rock Hard . In the April 1997 issue of the magazine, Jenal justified her views with parallels to environmental protection : “Just as there is a ban on pathogenic substances with increasing environmental pollution, I also consider a discussion about the mind and psyche of pathogenic products to be necessary. LIedtexts that defame groups of people, record covers that trample on human dignity and prevent the natural limit of disgust or the abhorrence of any kind of violence, should be banned in addition to providing information ” .

In the current discussion, the main focus is on the issue of publication restrictions and the associated concept of informal censorship. A literature symposium that took place in Marburg in 2010 was devoted to the topic of “Artistic Freedom and Censorship in the Federal Republic of 1949–2009” with various, sometimes controversial, contributions. On the one hand, many participants emphasized the challenges posed in particular by the new media. Others, however, pointed to tangible dangers that tend to restrict the freedom of the press and artistic freedom - especially because of the line that emerged from the constitutional court ruling in the Esra case . The Stuttgarter Zeitung reported that some participants were very critical of the possibility of creating art at the moment: “The writer and lawyer Georg M. Oswald commented on this in Marbach: The border between artistic freedom and personal rights runs 'at the height of the belt' . Christian Eichner also asked whether texts like Goethe's 'Werther' or Thomas Mann's 'Buddenbrooks' could have appeared under such conditions. If the judgment on the question 'What is art?' If someone fell in the courts, it worked like a 'sword of Damocles' that could lead to the 'amputation of literary inspiration'. "

The subject is occasionally used for propaganda purposes by the right-wing extremist scene. Some sites such as Thiazi publish selectively selected indexing lists for this purpose. The well-known publicist Claus Nordbruch also emerged as an author on this topic . In a book on the subject he denounced a number of censorship measures. On the other hand, he expressed understanding for the fatwa against the Iranian author Salman Rushdie because of the insult to religion that he saw .

For several years now, the area of ​​tension between the legal interest of freedom of expression and the possible violation of religious feelings resulting from expressions of opinion has taken up a large part of the social debate . This debate is not limited to Germany. The focus here is primarily, but not exclusively, on the religious feelings of Muslims. Eckehard Peters, the former commissioner for foreigners in the Thuringian state government, sees increasing self-censorship among authors and publishers who, for fear of acts of violence by radical Muslims, shied away from publishing works critical of Islam. The journalist Henryk M. Broder discussed in his 2006 book “ Hurray, we capitulate! From the pleasure of buckling ”, especially using the example of the Mohammed caricatures, the self-censorship of the intellectual left in Germany against Islam . The example of Salman Rushdie and his novel The Satanic Verses is also repeatedly cited as an example of anticipatory self-censorship and fear of potential reactions by radical Muslims . For fear of Islamist terrorist attacks , Rushdie's title was initially not published by any of the established publishers. It was only published by the Article 19 publishing house, which was founded especially for this purpose . The Catholic writer Martin Mosebach, on the other hand, in the essay Art and Religion: On the Value of Prohibition, called for a strict application of the ban on blasphemy . In doing so, he took the view that even in a completely secular, religiously neutral state, it might be necessary to forbid and punish blasphemy if it were to endanger the “state order”. He referred to an increasing number of devout Muslims in Germany and the danger that “a larger group of believers [could] feel so offended by the blasphemy in their religious convictions” “that their outrage becomes a public problem”.


A statement about the exact number of indexed media can hardly be made. On the one hand, this is due to the enormous breadth of the genres and formats involved, and on the other hand, to the practice of BPjM. The BPjM does not explicitly list seized media - because a list could be indirect advertising. The figures therefore vary greatly. In an article for the online magazine Telepolis, Roland Seim named a number of around 15,000 indexed titles. According to an article published online by Heise, the current black list in 2004 included around 5,300 titles - including computer games and relevant online offers. One possible reason for the strongly differing or contradicting information are updated lists. On the other hand, the BPjM list entries are not limited in time - which, conversely, means that controversial entries must be removed from the list by the BPjM reviewers themselves.

For the most part, individual breakdowns that Roland Seim made in 1997 should be (still) up to date. After that, 8 films and 130 videos were completely banned. About half of them were criticized for pornographic representations or extreme violence. Eight recordings were banned, over 200 indexed by the BPjM. The majority of the indexes were based on the texts; of this, in turn, the majority concerned recordings from the right-wing extremist spectrum. There were comparatively few indexes based on the cover design (32 records and CDs ); the bulk of it concerned releases from the genre metal.

See also

Individual evidence

  1. ^ A b Oscar W. Gabriel, Sabine Kropp: The EU states in comparison: structures, processes, policy content. VS Verlag, 2008, ISBN 978-3-531-42282-4 ( Google Books ).
  2. Democracy Index 2010. Democracy Index 2010; The Economist Intelligence Unit Limited , 2010 (English; PDF; 3.01 MB)
  3. Reporters Without Borders publishes a ranking of press freedom. ( Memento of the original from October 24, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Website dedicated to Germany, October 21, 2010. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.engagiert-in-deutschland.de
  4. Post-censorship. The collision of artistic freedom and personal rights using the example of the novel Esra by Maxim Biller , Jan Ole Eggert, Iabris. Yearbook for European Processes , 7th year, 2008.
  5. ^ Uwe Wittstock : Censorship does take place , in: Die Welt , July 19, 2010.
  6. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 198 ff.
  7. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 249 ff.
  8. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 400 ff.
  9. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 111 ff.
  10. ^ Literature censorship in the GDR , Michael Opitz, Deutschlandradio Kultur, August 15, 2008.
  11. Hubert Spiegel: Prohibition of the novel "Esra": Art against life. FAZ.net , October 13, 2007.
  12. Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany . Federal Ministry of Justice (full text edition as PDF; 189 kB)
  13. The political structures of Germany. ( Memento from June 17, 2012 in the Internet Archive ), accessed on August 14, 2011 (PDF; 877 kB).
  14. Denazification. ( Memento from January 24, 2015 in the Internet Archive ) Jens Fergen, Gerd-Kristian Kull, Fabian Thehos and Marco Meyer, Louise-Schroeder-Gymnasium Munich (teaching documents), accessed on August 14, 2011.
  15. Quoted from Ingrid Stapf: Self-control , in: Christian Schicha and Carsten Brosda (eds.): Handbuch Medienethik, Wiesbaden 2010, pp. 164–185, here p. 165.
  16. Quoted from Ingrid Stapf: Self-control , in: Christian Schicha and Carsten Brosda (eds.): Handbuch Medienethik, Wiesbaden 2010, pp. 164-185, here p. 166.
  17. ^ Dieter Hesselberger: The Basic Law. Commentary for political education , 9th edition, Hermann Luchterhand Verlag, Neuwied 1995, p. 84 f.
  18. Hartmut Maurer : Staatsrecht I. Basics - constitutional organs - state functions , 5th edition, Munich 2007, ISBN 3-406-55825-9 .
  19. Equal treatment not only on paper. ( Memento of March 20, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Online portal of the European Commission, September 29, 2008.
  20. Günter Erbel: Public Security in the Shadow of Terrorism , in: From Politics and Contemporary History 10–11 / 2002 (PDF; 55 kB).
  21. Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger : Page no longer available , search in web archives: Preserving the freedom of the Internet , in: Stuttgarter Zeitung , May 3, 2010.@1@ 2Template: Toter Link / content.stuttgarter-zeitung.de
  22. When the censorship looks pretty old. Constanze Kurz , FAZ.net, August 20, 2010.
  23. ^ Institutions of media control: The Federal Inspectorate for Media Harmful to Young People (BPjM). Svetlana Dub, Ifak. Institute for Applied Children's Media Research, accessed on August 14, 2011.
  24. ^ Institutions of media control: The Voluntary Self-Control of the Film Industry (FSK). Viktoria Rimsha, Ifak. Institute for Applied Children's Media Research, accessed on August 14, 2011.
  25. In conversation: Roland Koch. What do you have against Nikolaus Brender? , Stefan Niggemeier, FAZ.net, February 24, 2009.
  26. "Simply not acceptable". Ralf Siepmann, FR-Online, March 12, 2008.
  27. a b instances. Medienzensur.de, overview page instances, accessed on August 13, 2011.
  28. Volkswartbund: Black longing . In: Der Spiegel . No. 43 , 1962, pp. 48-52 ( Online - Oct. 24, 1962 ).
  29. censorship. Medienzensur.de, overview page genres and possible means of intervention, accessed on August 13, 2011.
  30. a b confiscation. Medienzensur.de, overview page on the subject of confiscation and prohibition, accessed on August 13, 2011.
  31. indexing. Medienzensur.de, overview page on the subject of indexing, accessed on August 13, 2011.
  32. Voluntary self-regulation of the film industry (FSK). Medienzensur.de, overview page on FSK and age ratings, accessed on August 13, 2011.
  33. ^ Censorship in literature and print media. Medienzensur.de, overview page on the topic of print media, accessed on August 13, 2011.
  34. a b Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 249; quoted from: Twenty Years of Radical , 1996, p. 157.
  35. Page no longer available , search in web archives: May 3rd - Freedom of the press day. dju warns against indirect methods of press censorship. Press release by dju, service union ver.di, May 2, 2007.@1@ 2Template: Toter Link / dju.verdi.de
  36. Dealing with the Nazi past. Axel Schildt , bpb. Federal Agency for Civic Education, accessed on August 14, 2011.
  37. A misjudgment as a yardstick? , York-Gothart Mix and Christian Eichner, literaturkritik.de , issue No. 6, June 2007.
  38. Ernst Elitz : On the sixtieth: The "Spiegel" celebrates its birthday. Zeit Online , December 28, 2006.
  39. Hitler's "Mein Kampf": Between Criticism and Propaganda. ( Memento from September 17, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Tim Farin, Stern.de, April 25, 2008.
  40. a b Affair: Artful hum . In: Der Spiegel . No. 3 , 1991, pp. 185-186 ( Online - Jan. 14, 1991 ).
  41. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 230 ff.
  42. ^ Sybille Steinbacher : The struggle for morality and decency in the early Federal Republic. S. 113ff, Siedler, Munich 2011, ISBN 978-3-88680-977-6
  43. 60 years of Hildegard Knef in "The Sinner": Priests threw stink bombs. Daniel Kothenschulte, Frankfurter Rundschau, January 17, 2011.
  44. Bravo , edition 16/1960.
  45. Jörg Fauser: Revenge is mine, says Mike . In: Der Spiegel . No. 42 , 1984, pp. 252-257 ( Online - Oct. 15, 1984 ).
  46. Rowohlt's bestseller: Even more urgent . In: Der Spiegel . No. 11 , 1970, pp. 185-187 ( Online - Mar. 9, 1970 ).
  47. Censorship in the film: "Zerschnitte Films". Hendrik Klein, stern.de, November 6, 2003.
  48. Authors: Preferably nothing new . In: Der Spiegel . No. 27 , 1998, pp. 167 ( Online - June 29, 1998 ).
  49. Nothing new in the West. Story of a film based on Erich Maria Remarque. Jens Ebert, Deutschlandradio Kultur, December 7, 2005.
  50. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 259.
  51. ^ Federal Agency for Civic Education, censorship of DEFA films in the Federal Republic , December 18, 2008
  52. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 260.
  53. Film: Breasts, yes . In: Der Spiegel . No. 10 , 1972, p. 145-146 ( Online - Feb. 28, 1972 ).
  54. Ruth Herrmann: "Out of physical enthusiasm" , in: Die Zeit , July 18, 1969.
  55. ↑ Sex education: try everything . In: Der Spiegel . No. 17 , 1976, p. 97-98 ( Online - Apr. 19, 1976 ).
  56. ^ Günter Amendt: Sex Front. ( Memento from August 2, 2012 in the web archive archive.today ) Alva Gehrmann, fluter. Magazine of the Federal Agency for Civic Education, July 29, 2003.
  57. Susanne Mayer : Der Schatten von 1968 , in: Die Zeit, No. 42/1996 of October 11, 1996.
  58. ^ The fight for freedom of the press - The Spiegel Affair 1962. ( Memento from April 20, 2007 in the Internet Archive ) Georg Gruber, Deutschlandradio Kultur, October 25, 2002.
  59. Mephisto: The return of the repressed . In: Der Spiegel . No. 7 , 1981, pp. 182-184 ( Online - Feb. 9, 1981 ).
  60. ^ Theater / Munich: Double play . In: Der Spiegel . No. 45 , 1968, pp. 218 ( online - 4 November 1968 ).
  61. Roland Seim, Josef Spiegel (ed.): Only for adults. Rock and pop music: censored, discussed and suppressed. Telos Verlag, 2004, ISBN 978-3-933060-16-7 , p. 151.
  62. a b c Bernd Dolle-Weinkauff: Comics . Beltz Verlag, Weinheim, Basel 1990, ISBN 3-407-56521-6 , p. 100.
  63. a b c d Bernd Dolle-Weinkauff: Comics . Beltz Verlag, Weinheim, Basel 1990, ISBN 3-407-56521-6 , p. 108.
  64. Review of the BPjM on the year 2009 ( Memento from November 20, 2010 in the Internet Archive ), (PDF; 115 kB)
  65. a b Bernd Dolle-Weinkauff: Comics . Beltz Verlag, Weinheim, Basel 1990, ISBN 3-407-56521-6 , p. 104.
  66. ^ Andreas C. Knigge: Comic Yearbook 1989 . Ullstein Verlag, Frankfurt am Main; Berlin 1989, ISBN 3-548-36565-5 , p. 375.
  67. Bernd Dolle-Weinkauff: Comics . Beltz Verlag, Weinheim, Basel 1990, ISBN 3-407-56521-6 , p. 103.
  68. a b Bernd Dolle-Weinkauff: Comics . Beltz Verlag, Weinheim, Basel 1990, ISBN 3-407-56521-6 , p. 109.
  69. Bernd Dolle-Weinkauff: Comics . Beltz Verlag, Weinheim, Basel 1990, ISBN 3-407-56521-6 , p. 110.
  70. a b c Roland Seim: "No Sex, please!" - Comic and censorship (PDF; 65 kB) on telos-verlag.de, accessed on January 24, 2012.
  71. Bernd Dolle-Weinkauff: Comics . Beltz Verlag, Weinheim, Basel 1990, ISBN 3-407-56521-6 , p. 113.
  72. Interview with Claus Offe: "The liberalization was enormous". Alexander Cammann, Jens Hacke and Stephan Schlak, taz.de , September 13, 2005.
  73. ^ Society / Sex Wave: Topic One . In: Der Spiegel . No. 32 , 1970, pp. 32-46 ( Online - Aug. 3, 1970 ).
  74. Pornography: Unstoppable . In: Der Spiegel . No. 41 , 1974, p. 210-213 ( Online - Oct. 7, 1974 ).
  75. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 261.
  76. A tango - not for Good Friday . In: Der Spiegel . No. 9 , 1973, p. 105-106 ( Online - Feb. 26, 1973 ).
  77. ^ Censorship: The acquitted sexuality . In: Der Spiegel . No. 7 , 1978, p. 180-189 ( Online - Feb. 13, 1978 ).
  78. Schnittberichte.com. annotated version comparison, accessed on August 11, 2011.
  79. The lullaby of manslaughter. Film review, DVD forum, accessed August 14, 2011.
  80. Martin Wolf: Scandals: Im Schlund . In: Der Spiegel . No. 31 , 2005, p. 150 ( online - Aug. 1, 2005 ).
  81. Books: Erotic Grotesque . In: Der Spiegel . No. 8 , 1987, pp. 234-238 ( Online - Feb. 16, 1987 ).
  82. a b Peter Stolle: The rake in the garden of earthly delights . In: Der Spiegel . No. 7 , 1986, pp. 195-202 ( Online - Feb. 10, 1986 ).
  83. Books: March and Muff . In: Der Spiegel . No. 47 , 1972, p. 205 ( Online - Nov. 13, 1972 ).
  84. ^ Trials: To Lodz . In: Der Spiegel . No. 4 , 1975, p. 44-46 ( online - 20 January 1975 ).
  85. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 233.
  86. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 335.
  87. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , pp. 344/345.
  88. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , pp. 335/336.
  89. Klaus Staeck: He's missing! In: Berliner Zeitung . July 22, 2010, accessed June 15, 2015 .
  90. The guerrillas fight from ambush . In: Der Spiegel . No. 23 , 1972, p. 24-34 ( Online - May 29, 1972 ).
  91. Publishers: Really pushed . In: Der Spiegel . No. 28 , 1972, p. 108-109 ( online - 3 July 1972 ).
  92. Jürgen Arnold, Peter Schult (ed.): A book is banned. Bommi Baumann documentation. Trikont Verlag 1979, ISBN 978-3-88167-034-0 .
  93. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 240.
  94. Konstantin Wecker and Prince Chaos II .: He was always there , obituary for Franz Josef Degenhardt.
  95. Alternative: Dr. Marie Huana . In: Der Spiegel . No. 26 , 1981, pp. 83 ( online - 22 June 1981 ).
  96. ^ Black Book Franz-Josef Strauss, 1972. ( Memento from August 10, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Censorship Archive, accessed on August 14, 2011.
  97. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 236.
  98. Roland Seim, Josef Spiegel (ed.): Only for adults. Rock and pop music: censored, discussed and suppressed. Telos Verlag, 2004, ISBN 978-3-933060-16-7 , p. 21.
  99. Publishers: Merciless Hunter . In: Der Spiegel . No. 44 , 1972, pp. 72-73 ( Online - Oct. 23, 1972 ).
  100. Dangerous music and how we deal with it in Germany. ( Memento of September 23, 2017 in the Internet Archive ) Philip Akoto, zensur.org, summer 2000, accessed on August 14, 2011.
  101. ^ Justice: Sieg Helau . In: Der Spiegel . No. 20 , 1980, pp. 74-75 ( Online - May 12, 1980 ).
  102. ^ Punk prayer from Biggs, the mail robber . In: Der Spiegel . No. 28 , 1978, p. 132 ( online - 10 July 1978 ).
  103. Roland Seim, Josef Spiegel (ed.): Only for adults. Rock and pop music: censored, discussed and suppressed. Telos Verlag, 2004, ISBN 978-3-933060-16-7 , pp. 135/136.
  104. Roland Seim, Josef Spiegel (ed.): Only for adults. Rock and pop music: censored, discussed and suppressed. Telos Verlag, 2004, ISBN 978-3-933060-16-7 , p. 221 f.
  105. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 303.
  106. Extremists: They are totally disturbed . In: Der Spiegel . No. 30 , 1997, pp. 50-53 ( online - 21 July 1997 ).
  107. Indexing and Law Enforcement. ( Memento from April 19, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Brandenburg State Center for Civic Education, accessed on August 24, 2011.
  108. Procedure: Soldiers have played out. Heike Kleffner , the daily newspaper, December 9, 2003.
  109. ^ Böhse-Onkelz-Veteran Weidner: Anger in the head. Philip Oehmke, Spiegel Online, May 3, 2008.
  110. Violent games. ( Memento of October 5, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) jugendschutz.net , accessed on August 24, 2011.
  111. See articles and comparisons on the film page schnittberichte.com
  112. Cut or Uncut? , Ernst Corinth, Telepolis, May 13, 2004.
  113. Gone into the net , Stuttgarter Zeitung of March 4, 2002, p. 16.
  114. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 297.
  115. Indexed sound carriers ( memento of July 25, 2005 in the Internet Archive ) of the page www.bpjm.com, subpage “Sound carriers”, accessed on September 30, 2011.
  116. Capital Rap: Bundesprüfstelle puts songs on the index. Spiegel Online, June 28, 2005.
  117. Roland Seim, Josef Spiegel (ed.): Only for adults. Rock and pop music: censored, discussed and suppressed. Telos Verlag, 2004, ISBN 978-3-933060-16-7 , p. 230.
  118. Tina Klopp: Online censorship: Every week an injunction. Zeit Online, October 27, 2009.
  119. ^ Bundestag overturns internet blocks , Frankfurter Rundschau , December 1, 2011.
  120. Freedom of the press: Overrun with blue lights , Heribert Prantl, Süddeutsche Zeitung, November 9, 2007
  121. Data Retention: What the Judgment Really Means. Christian Stücker, Spiegel Online, March 2, 2010.
  122. Demonstrations: Thousands demonstrate against surveillance , Hamburger Morgenpost , September 12, 2009
  123. Marie-Theres Tinnefeld: Stop signs on the Internet - unsettling questions in the fight against child pornography , in: Data Protection and Data Security , Issue 1 2010, pp. 15-19, here p. 15.
  124. Louisa Reichstetter: Wikileaks: Ingeniously dangerous. Zeit Online, April 18, 2010.
  125. GuttenPlag Wiki: In the network of plagiarism hunters. Matthias Kremp, Spiegel Online, February 19, 2011.
  126. ^ "Cicero" judgment: Constitutional Court strengthens freedom of the press. Spiegel Online, February 27, 2007.
  127. TAZ editor also refused accreditation for G8 summit. ( Memento of the original from August 8, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. linkszeitung.de, May 31, 2007. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.linkezeitung.de
  128. Christian Stöcker:Freedom of expression in the age of the internet in Spiegel-Online, February 1, 2006
  129. cartoon controversy: Grsass criticized cartoons as deliberate provocation , FAZ, February 9, 2006
  130. ^ The first: “People at Maischberger” on Tuesday, February 7th, 10:45 pm , news aktuell, February 6th, 2006
  131. Sexus, Phallus, Ödipus , Wolfgang Höbel, Der Spiegel, December 22, 2006
  132. The Esra case: This is how we live. Nils Minkmar, FAZ.net, October 14, 2007.
  133. Compensation for pain and suffering for "Esra": A frightening judgment with reassuring detail. Richard Kämmerlings, FAZ.net, February 13, 2008.
  134. ^ "Esra dispute": Maxim Biller does not have to pay compensation for pain and suffering , Spiegel Online, November 24, 2009.
  135. Interview with Florian Havemann: “My father? A small, instinct-controlled male ”. ( Memento from February 11, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Arno Luik, stern.de, January 21, 2008.
  136. ^ Trials: In the matter of Romy . In: Der Spiegel . No. 5 , 2009, p. 121 ( Online - Jan. 26, 2009 ).
  137. Celebrities: Hannelore Elsner is suing Wedel . In: Der Spiegel . No. 3 , 2010, p. 128 ( Online - Jan. 18, 2010 ).
  138. ^ Immendorff biography: Not a scandal. Swantje Karich, FAZ.net, September 15, 2010.
  139. Book Market : Separation Pain, Der Spiegel, No. 31/2011 of August 1, 2011.
  140. Answer of the Berlin Senator for Justice to the short question "Section 130 a StGB: Investigations against booksellers?" By Dirk Behrendt from November 5, 2010. Berlin House of Representatives, printed matter 16/14889 (PDF; 23 kB).
  141. unzensiert-lesen.de , accessed on November 16, 2011.
  142. ^ Taz: Activists taken offline , June 10, 2010.
  143. Dresden mayor may not be shown naked. Sebastian Hammelehle, Spiegel Online, December 3, 2009.
  144. Google statistics: How the German censorship vice world champions became. pat, Spiegel Online, April 21, 2010.
  145. Hurray, we are censorship world champions! , Burkhard Schröder, Burk's Blog, February 21, 2011.
  146. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 375 ff.
  147. Morality versus sex waves. Frank Meyer: Interview with Sybille Steinbacher, Deutschlandradio Kultur, February 22, 2011.
  148. ^ Henryk M. Broder : The scissors in the head. About censorship and self-censorship. Bund-Verlag , 1984, ISBN 978-3-7663-0138-3 .
  149. a b 50 years against 'dirt and trash'. Roland Seim, Telepolis, May 10, 2004.
  150. ^ Publications of the BPjM. ( Memento from September 1, 2011 in the Internet Archive ) Website of the Federal Testing Office for Media Harmful to Young People, accessed on August 14, 2011.
  151. ^ Rock Hard , Issue 4/1997; quoted after Roland Seim, Josef Spiegel (Ed.): Only for adults. Rock and pop music: censored, discussed and suppressed. Telos Verlag, 2004, ISBN 978-3-933060-16-7 , p. 34.
  152. Page no longer available , search in web archives: The belt line as the limit of artistic freedom. Rolf Spinnler, Stuttgarter Zeitung, July 19, 2010.@1@ 2Template: Toter Link / content.stuttgarter-zeitung.de
  153. Claus Nordbruch: Are thoughts still free? Universitas, 2001, ISBN 3-8004-1367-1 , p. 218 ff.
  154. Eckehard Peters: Mohammed and reality, in: The Political Opinion 10/2010 (491), p. 43–45 - quote on p. 45 (PDF)
  155. ^ Art and Religion: The Value of Prohibition , accessed on August 2, 2012.
  156. Catholics call for a stricter ban on blasphemy , Florian Rötzer, Telepolis, July 28, 2012
  157. 5300 media harmful to minors on the index. heise online, July 8, 2004.
  158. ^ Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 , p. 229 ff.


  • Sybille Steinbacher: How sex came to Germany. The struggle for morality and decency in the early Federal Republic. Siedler Verlag, 2011, ISBN 978-3-88680-977-6 .
  • Frank Fechner, Johannes C. Mayer (eds.): Media law: collection of rules (textbook German law). CF Müller, 2011, ISBN 978-3-8114-9655-2 .
  • Voluntary self-regulation television e. V. (Hrsg.): Controversial point of youth protection: tighten or abolish? Uvk, 2011, ISBN 978-3-86764-316-0 .
  • Ansgar Koreng: Censorship on the Internet. The constitutional protection of digital mass communication. Baden-Baden 2010, ISBN 978-3-8329-5465-9 .
  • Immanuel Fick: Movie zombies and cinema cannibals. The censorship of violent video films in Great Britain and Germany since 1980. Tectum Verlag, 2010, ISBN 978-3-8288-2402-7 .
  • Matthias N. Lorenz: Literature and Censorship in Democracy. The Federal Republic and the freedom of art. UTB, 2009, ISBN 978-3-8252-3266-5 .
  • Mark Westphal: Media studies theories in their practical application. Investigation of selected decisions of the Federal Testing Office for Media Harmful to Young People with regard to media science argumentation models. Telos Verlag, 2008, ISBN 978-3-933060-27-3 .
  • Claudia Reisgies: Media and Violence - Prevention by the Federal Testing Office for Writings Harmful to Young People . GRIN Verlag, 2007, ISBN 978-3-638-75858-1 .
  • Roland Seim: The annotated illustrated book on “Ab 18” - censored, discussed, suppressed. Censorship in German cultural history. Telos Verlag, 2007, ISBN 978-3-933060-05-1 .
  • Herbert van Uffelen, Andrea Seidler (ed.): Eroticism in European literature: textualization, censorship, motifs and models. Praesens, 2007, ISBN 978-3-7069-0480-3 .
  • Reto Wehrli: devil heavy metal. Scandals and Censorship in Modern Music History. Telos Verlag, 2005, ISBN 978-3-933060-15-0 .
  • Roland Seim, Josef Spiegel: "Only for adults". Rock and pop music: censored, discussed, suppressed. Telos Verlag, 2004, ISBN 978-3-933060-16-7 .
  • Beate Müller: Censorship in the modern German cultural area. Niemeyer, 2003, ISBN 3-484-35094-6 .
  • FB Habel: Cut films. Censorship in the cinema. Kiepenheuer, 2003, ISBN 3-378-01069-X .
  • Stephan Buchloh: “Perverse, harmful to young people, subversive”. Censorship in the Adenauer era as a mirror of the social climate. Campus Verlag, 2002, ISBN 3-593-37061-1 .
  • Roland Seim: “From 18” - censored, discussed, suppressed. "The third degree": BD 1. Telos Verlag, 2002, ISBN 3-933060-01-X .
  • Werner Pieper: 1000 years of music and censorship in various Germanys. Pieper Werner Medienexp., 2001, ISBN 3-922708-09-9 .
  • Elke Blumenhauer: Journalism between freedom of the press and censorship. Böhlau, 2000, ISBN 3-412-09499-4 .
  • Tageszeitung / Heinrich Böll Foundation (ed.): The map of censorship. Ch. Links Verlag, 1998, ISBN 978-3-86153-169-2 .
  • Matthias W. Zehnder: Danger from Cyberspace? The internet between freedom and censorship. Birkhäuser Verlag, 1998, ISBN 978-3-7643-5784-9 .
  • Federal inspection agency for writings harmful to minors: New media - new dangers ?! Böhlau, 1998, ISBN 3-412-06497-1 .
  • Roland Seim: Between media freedom and censorship. A media and legal sociological investigation of the influence of censors on German popular culture. Telos Verlag, 1997, ISBN 3-933060-00-1 .
  • Wilfried Steiner: Censorship or voluntary self-control. From breaking a taboo to political correctness. Konkret Literatur Verlag, 1997, ISBN 978-3-930786-10-7 .
  • Roland Seim, Achim Schnurrer, Josef Spiegel: Comic censorship. Edition Art of Comics, 1996, ISBN 978-3-89593-488-9 .
  • Hans J. Schütz: Forbidden books. A History of Censorship from Homer to Henry Miller. CH Beck, 1990, ISBN 3-406-34007-5 .
  • Birgit Dankert, Lothar Zechlin: Literature before the judge: Contributions to freedom of literature and censorship. Normos, 1989, ISBN 3-7890-1616-0 .
  • Henryk M. Broder: The scissors in the head. About censorship and self-censorship. Bund-Verlag, 1984, ISBN 3-7663-0138-1 .
  • Georg circle : censorship and self-censorship. Frauenfeld / Huber Verlag, 1973, ISBN 3-7193-0456-6 .

Web links

Commons : Censorship in Germany  - collection of images, videos and audio files