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The Streisand Effect

If you too have been living in a box since 2003, you won’t have known what the Streisand Effect was. I’m going to outline it in this article along with a few other juicy stories that have been named after it.

When trying to hide, it just makes it worse.

This is what happened when superstar Barbara Streisand sued photographer Kenneth Adelman for sharing images featuring her mansion in Malibu. We already know that it’s common knowledge if you make a big deal over something, it’s going to draw more attention to it. Barbara must not have considered this when she sued him for $50 million for showing people how to gain access to her residence. At this point, the picture had only been viewed 6 times. Obviously, the news was reported and before long the photo had over a million views and had been reprinted numerous times. Unfortunately for Streisand, as well as achieving the opposite of what she had wanted, she also had to cover the photographer’s huge legal fees!

So, there you have it: The Streisand Effect. There’s been other interesting stories where this Effect has also taken place…


In 2013, superstar Beyonce performed at the Super Bowl (just one of the biggest sporting events, ever! No biggie.) BuzzFeed posted images of Beyonce’s performance which were shortly followed by her publicist’s email asking them to be removed. The email itemised the photos which were to be taken down as they were ‘unflattering’. Rather than removing them, Buzzfeed posted another article called ‘The Unflattering Photos Beyonce’s Publicist Doesn’t Want You To See’. The post included the email and the selected photos! You can see them here: 


Another interesting one was in June 2014. Taxi drivers congregated on the streets of London to declare their concern towards Uber, an app that uses a smartphone’s GPS system to connect you to a driver. At this time, the app was only just becoming popular. After the protest Uber reported that it had received an 859% increase in downloads compared to the previous week! Now look at them go!

uberThe Pirate Bay:

In June 2011, The Pirate Bay (a website who displayed copyright music) were asked to remove torrent links. They refused, forcing them to go to court. The High Court ordered five major internet service providers to block access to the site. This only proved to increase The Pirate Bay’s popularity, allowing 12 million visitors to visit in just that day. Right after the block was set up, the torrent site gave users easy ways to access other sites linked by them. Easy!

pirate baySamsung:

Youtuber ghostlyrich uploaded a video showing his Samsung Galaxy S4 catching fire for no apparent reason. He made an official complaint and was offered a deal to replace the phone as long as he removed the video from his channel and not upload similar material. Instead of accepting the deal, he decided to upload a second video that earned more than a million views. In the video he expressed his concern about how Samsung deals with major safety concerns and how they don’t follow warranty procedures. Since then, several stories about Samsung smartphones catching fire have been reported. One man from Hong Kong lost his house due to a fire that was allegedly started by his Samsung Galaxy S4!


Do you know of any more Streisand Effect stories? Maybe you have your own? 

Let us know! 




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