Streisand effect

The widespread dissemination of information caused by an attempt to suppress that information. Also: Barbra Streisand effect.
Example Citations:
The Digg-DVD donnybrook is the latest example of what's come to be called the "Streisand effect," in which efforts to squelch a bit of online information lead to that information being much more widely disseminated than it otherwise would have been.
The name stems from singer Barbra Streisand's 2003 lawsuit aimed at forcing a photographer, who was documenting coastal erosion, to remove photos of her seaside mansion from his previously obscure website. Thanks to publicity from the lawsuit, the pictures spread widely on the Internet.
—Rebecca Dube, "An online revolution: Can you Digg it?," The Globe and Mail, May 3, 2007
Another reason that litigation is an ineffective method for curbing online defamation is the "Streisand Effect," named after famous songstress Barbara Streisand. The Streisand Effect refers to an attempt to suppress information on the Internet that results instead in a wider dissemination of the information.
—"The Streisand Effect," Inside Counsel, October 1, 2006
Earliest Citation:
How long is it going to take before lawyers realize that the simple act of trying to repress something they don't like online is likely to make it so that something that most people would never, ever see (like a photo of a urinal in some random beach resort) is now seen by many more people? Let's call it the Streisand Effect.
—Mike Masnick, " Since When Is It Illegal To Just Mention A Trademark Online?:," Techdirt, January 5, 2005
Many thanks to reader Mickey who unearthed an earlier citation for this phrase, and who also passed along a link to the Streisand Effect website:, which contains links to various Streisand Effect cases.
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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Streisand effect — The Streisand effect is a phenomenon on the Internet where an attempt to censor or remove a piece of information backfires, causing the information to be widely publicized. Examples are attempts to censor a photograph, a number, a file, or even a …   Wikipedia

  • Streisand effect — /ˈstraɪzənd əfɛkt/ (say struyzuhnd uhfekt) noun the paradoxical effect of an unwelcome increase in public attention caused by efforts to suppress information which has escaped into the public arena. {from the 2003 case of Barbra Streisand who… …   Australian English dictionary

  • Streisand effect — noun A phenomenon in which attempting to suppress an item of information attracts additional unwanted attention to it, thus furthering the spreading of the information …   Wiktionary

  • Streisand-Effekt — Als Streisand Effekt wird bezeichnet, wenn durch den Versuch, eine Information zu unterdrücken, genau das Gegenteil erreicht wird, nämlich die Information besonders bekannt gemacht wird. Seinen Namen verdankt der Effekt Barbra Streisand, die den… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Barbra Streisand — Infobox musical artist Name = Barbra Streisand Img capt = Streisand at Governors Ball following the 1995 Emmys Img size = Background = solo singer Birth name = Barbara Joan Streisand Born = birth date and age|1942|4|24 Brooklyn, New York, USA… …   Wikipedia

  • CSI effect — Forensic science Physiological sciences …   Wikipedia

  • Butterfly effect — For other uses, see Butterfly effect (disambiguation). Point attractors in 2D phase space. In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions; where a small change at one place in a nonlinear system can result …   Wikipedia

  • Hawthorne effect — The Hawthorne effect is a form of reactivity whereby subjects improve or modify an aspect of their behavior being experimentally measured simply in response to the fact that they know they are being studied,[1][2] not in response to any… …   Wikipedia

  • Osborne effect — The Osborne effect is a term referring to the unintended consequence of the announcement of a future product ahead of its availability and its impact upon the sales of the current product. Pre announcement is done for several reasons: to reassure …   Wikipedia

  • Cobra effect — The cobra effect is where a solution for solving a problem could actually make it worse.[1][2] The term is used to illustrate the causes of wrong stimulation in economy and politics.[2] There is also a book with the same title by Horst Siebert… …   Wikipedia

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