Spiral of Silence is an innovative theory of public opinion,   developed in the 1970's by Elisabeth Noelle-Neumann.her claim   is more extreme than the other strong effects theories. She considers   public opinion a tangible force that controls people's decisions.   The media not only shape reality, it can also create a new reality.   The phrase "spiral of silence" actually refers to how people   tend to remain silent when they feel that their views are in the   minority. Noelle-Neumann blames the spiral of silence on fear   of isolation. In other words, people who feel that they are in   the minority, keep quiet because they fear ridicule from the   majority. She gives a clear explanation on when and why people   speak out and when they decide to keep their mouths shut: "Individuals   who...notice that their own personal opinion is spreading and   is taken over by others, will voice this opinion self-confidently   in public. On the other hand, individuals who notice that their   own opinions are losing ground will be inclined to adopt a more   reserved attitude." Everyone has been in a position where their   opinion has been in the minority. People will be unwilling to   publicly express their opinion if they believe they are in the   minority. They will also be more vocal if they believe they are   a part of the majority. Thus, the more marginalized you become,   the less you speak and so spiral into a fully marginal position.   The Spiral of Silence is a model of why people are unwilling to   publicly express their opinions when they believe they are in   the minority. The model is based on three premises:       people have a "quasi-statistical organ," a sixth-sense     if you will, which allows them to know the prevailing public     opinion, even without access to polls,
      people have a fear of isolation and know what behaviors will     increase their likelihood of being socially isolated, and
      People are reticent to express their minority views,...