thumb|300px|right|What this sound sounds likeA bleep censor (or "bleeping") is the replacement of profanity or classified information with a beep sound (usually a About this sound 1000 Hz tone (help·info)), in television or radio. It is mainly used in the United Kingdom, Canada, the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Japan.
Bleeping has been used for many years as a means of censoring TV programmes to remove content not suitable for "family" or "daytime" viewing and personal information for privacy. The bleep censor is a software module, manually operated by a broadcast technician. A bleep is sometimes accompanied by a digital blurring of the speaker's mouth or covered with a picture like a black rectangle, in cases where the removed speech may still be easily understood by lip-reading.
On closed caption subtitling, bleeped words are usually represented by the phrase "(bleep)", sometimes the phrase "[expletive]",
Bleeping in the final cut of a film is extremely rare (alternatives abound anyway), unless it was intended by the director (as in a fantasy 1960s sitcom scene in Natural Born Killers, or for plot purposes in "Kill Bill"). At least one swear word was (intentionally) bleeped out of Talladega Nights, Ocean's Twelve, Accepted, Happy Gilmore (when Gilmore is swearing on the T.V.), Disaster Movie, The Cat in the Hat, Meet the Spartans, Austin Powers: The Spy who Shagged Me, and during the credits of Wild Hogs. There was also an instance of bleeped language in The Spy Next Door (during the bloopers) and Iron Man 2 (in the Tony Stark lawsuit TV broadcast at the beginning of the film)
The bleep has been used as a source of humor
In the episode "Sailor Mouth" of SpongeBob SquarePants, a large number of implied swear words are bleeped out with various ocean-themed sound effects, such as dolphin chirps. Though when Mr. Jenkins drives by on his Jalopy and honks his horn the characters think someone swore. Similarly, Mythbusters uses a wide range of sound effects to censor language or "top secret" material.
In an episode of Tiny Toon Adventures entitled "To Bleep or Not to Bleep" Fowlmouth says swear words that are bleeped out throughout the episode when he is angered. Lots of times he cussed for no reason. Buster Bunny gets him out of swearing first with a robot, but that doesn't work. Then when he realized Fowlmouth doesn't swear around little kids, he helped him by placing a kid next to him if he was about swear.
Bleeping is commonly used on television programs that use profane words that are forbidden to television networks. Adult comedies such as The Office, Seinfeld, Family Guy, American Dad!, The Cleveland Show, The Simpsons, Futurama, Drawn Together, and especially South Park and Robot Chicken use this process to block strong curses that cannot be used on television in the United States, and mainly to air it outside the watershed, or safe harbor.
In one episode of the famous Youtube show, The Potter Puppet Pals, there is a 40 second-long bleep. It was funny. =D