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Questions tagged [freedom-of-speech]

The right to communicate without fear of government sanction or censorship. While this right is implied in some countries, it may not be explicit in all of them. For the U.S. see also "first-amendment" tag.

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What would be considered as a true threat?

What is considered to be as a true threat? Let's say that there is a person who said to someone else "You deserve to die... Watch your back, I'm coming for you." which becomes an issue in court. On ...
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Can a religious employer prohibit public advocacy?

I work for the Roman Catholic church in the USA. I am an administrative assistant with only very rare dealings with the public. When I was hired I was told by a Human Resources representative that if ...
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452 views

Is it illegal to yell “fire” in a crowded theatre?

I've yet to hear this cliché invoked where the person thinks it's legal, but I see no reason why it wouldn't be. If you yell fire and cause something to happen that endangers people then wouldn't the ...
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Can private institutions fire employees without concern for the First Amendment?

The First Amendment doesn’t apply to private institutions. Private employers can fire employees for their speech without having to worry about the First Amendment. What the NFL’s new rules for ...
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Is it legal to force a atheist student to read a prayer in a Church of England UK academy?

At my school, which is a Church of England academy, instead of assemblies, we do "Collective Worship" (although everyone still calls them assemblies). With whole-school assemblies, each class takes ...
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Hate-Speech website hosted in the USA, but targeting an audience overseas

A website promoting Nazism and Racial hatred is hosted in the USA, but targeting an audience overseas - specifically Australia. Does this break any obvious laws? EDIT: I strongly suspect that the ...
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When it it illegal to lie?

It occurred to me the other day that (in America) I could write book claiming that soda cures cancer, and there would be no legal consequence to that—free speech. But if sold soda and claimed that it ...
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55 views

Arbitration - what can be made public

I have read that arbitration proceedings and decisions are private. I have not seen any reference regarding what information can be made public before, during and after the process: Filing and ...
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1answer
54 views

Can a student send a personal email on school campus without scrutiny by administration?

Is the following scenario legal Let's say that there is a student A, who sends student B in a personal email but on school campus and on school wifi. Student A's email includes derogatory description ...
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Cursing in NJ by an Elected Official Councilman

What is the statue number that addresses an adult (an elected official) cursing at another adult publicly in New Jersey?
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1answer
101 views

Why are credit rating agencies in the US imune when giving false rating?

I need help understanding why does US legal system affords journalistic protection of free speech to credit rating agencies (CRA), especially those which rated mortgage backed securities (MBS) and ...
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1answer
545 views

Can I wear clothing with obvious profanity to a public school or council meeting?

I was trespassed for a year and criminally charged (with the case dismissed on constitutional grounds) because I was pushing the district to put in floor level exit signs for kids with autism in case ...
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Is Mongolia a good place to host a no-moderation social media website?

Between Mongolia and Canada, can you tell which country is less censored in terms of online freedom of speech?
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Is profanity a form of protected speech on college campuses?

I am currently attending college in Oklahoma and have run into a confusing policy. We have been warned that anyone living on campus who uses profanity in the dormitory lobby will be written up for a ...
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Is This A Legal Abuse of Teaching Power?

From this question on Academia Stack Exchange, a professor is requiring students to submit support for a law as an assignment. It's possible that the question misrepresents this, in that this is a ...
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1answer
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California's Leonard Law - to what extent does it apply at religious schools

Here's the full reference in the California legal code. The main section: (a) A school district operating one or more high schools, a charter school, or a private secondary school shall not make ...
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Can the city of Charlottesville, VA ban a group from assembling in the town because of religious or political views?

Richard B. Spencer (Wikipedia) organized and led a protest march on Oct. 7th, 2017 in Charlottesville, Virginia, drawing this reaction from Charlottesville Mayor Mike Signer on Twitter: “Another ...
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What are the limits on categorising someone's statements as 'hatred' in regard to freedom of speech?

In the US there exists a freedom of speech. (There is a similar concept in other countries). This is guaranteed by the first amendment. John Stuart Mill argued for a limitation to free speech, known ...
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1answer
126 views

Politically charged emails sent to entire University

I am an undergraduate student at Rutgers University, in New Jersey. Today I received the following email sent to my Rutgers address: Members of the Rutgers Community: We are writing to you in ...
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1answer
280 views

Is it against German law to oppose the existence of the state of Israel?

If in the German jurisdiction a person, without inciting violence, states in writing or in speech that they are opposed to the existence of the state of Israel and advocates that other people should ...
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What types of recourse do I have against people who contact my employers about thing I have of Facebook?

I made a factual statement about mathematics on Facebook. A group of people took exception to what I said and decided that they would contact my employer because they thought it made me unfit to be a ...
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If I ran a question-and-answer website in the US with absolutely no moderation, what legal trouble can I get into?

Suppose the contents are rated in the same way motion pictures are rated, and the users are warned before hand and are given the option to turn safety on and off. References to antecedent lawsuits ...
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Freedom of speech and terms of use of social networks, are TOS allowed to violate FOS?

Freedom of speech is a constitutional right in many countries. But nowadays, several social networks "which allow freedom of speech" are appearing and growing because several of the main social ...
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Can the title/subject of my self-published novella get me sued?

I've written a novella entitled 'Regression Therapy' which I intend to self-publish. It's a black-comedy about a man who undergoes past life regression therapy and, well, it has negative consequences. ...
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1answer
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Is it legal to show myself holding a fake severed bloodied head of a living person for profit?

Q1: If I decided to make an image of myself holding a (fake) Kathy Griffin's bloodied severed head and took a full colored newspaper ad with that picture in order to promote myself, would Kathy ...
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1answer
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How would the defendants in the McLibel case have more defenses in the U.S. than in the U.K

McDonald's sued two activists in Britain for libel, and won what I would consider a "mixed" verdict in the so-called McLibel case. My understanding is that defendants in Britain have to prove ...
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1answer
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What first amendment limits apply to law against “parading or demonstrating?”

Desiree A. Fairooz and two "Code Pink" co-conspirators were recently sent to jail and convicted for "parading or demonstrating on Capitol grounds" by dressing to be a visible symbol of dissent at Jeff ...
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193 views

Why is CBD legal in UK, Ireland, etc but it is Illegal to advertise it?

Why can't you advertise CBD on Facebook, Google, etc., considering there is no THC and it is not a drug?
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130 views

Can academics break the law with their research?

Are there any U.S. or U.K. laws that prevent academic research papers or journals from being published? Can academics outline the methodology of illegal activities? For example, could a computer ...
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Is writing quality regulated by the UK Sale of Goods Act

When products are sold in England and Wales there there is an implied contract term that the goods supplied under the contract are of satisfactory quality. (Sale of Goods Act, Section 14) Does this ...
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Are public universities bound by law to be unbiased?

This is specifically with regards to speakers invited to a university campus. Hypothetical situation: University A (for some period of time greater than an academic year) invites only anti-police,...
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Blasphemy in the Context of Freedom of Speech

So my country is currently exhausting herself with a blasphemy case. It makes me wonder because such case in other countries (Western countries in particular) are not considered a crime because it's a ...
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Is it a crime in the United States to say “the people want to bring down the regime”?

Link The said law says: Whoever knowingly or willfully advocates, abets, advises, or teaches the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying the government of the ...
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Was it legal to rant against trick or treating via loudspeaker during halloween?

I went trick or treating with my goddaughter for Halloween. During it we came across a house where the owner of the house were 'preaching' about the evils of Halloween, I don't recall the details but ...
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What Israeli laws are there concerning the word “Nazi”

The internet has numerous reports, which are often vague, about laws proposed or existing in Israel regulating use of the word "Nazi." Some apparently are not just about that word but are about any ...
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Lawful concerns about a tweet

I recently made a tweet towards the administrative staff at my high school that some people may consider distasteful or offensive. A couple people messaged me about the tweet out of concern that I ...
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Were any laws broken in the publishing of Trump's tax returns?

The New York Times have just published what they claim to be part of Donald Trump's tax return. Assuming their claim is true and that Trump and anyone who had legal representation rights for him did ...
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Under which German laws is it illegal to mock foreign rulers?

I read this (to me) strange article in the Washington Post saying a German comedian would go on trial in Germany for mocking the Turkish president. It appears from the article that it's this whole ...
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Can an ISP respond to a DMCA counter notice on behalf of a user?

We are an ISP, allowing our users to write reviews of their educational experience. Normally the users' free speech rights are protected through the Communications Decency Act, Anti-SLAPP statutes, ...
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Is using Nazi symbol in India offensive?

I wanted to know whether using hitler's quote / Nazi symbol / Photo in car, social networking sites considered offensive in India ? Will it lead to legal issues ?
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283 views

What constitutes publishing offensive material?

Recently an article was published in my local newspaper (Bedford, UK) saying a man had been charged with publishing offensive material. A quick Google search suggested that the definition for this is "...
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What does “being responsible for the abuse of that right” mean, and is this different from the first amendment?

The Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen States: "The free communication of thoughts and opinions is one of man’s most precious rights. Every citizen may therefore speak, write and publish ...
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When do speakers need a license to speak?

I was reading this article. It's fairly long, but one sentence states that "generally, speakers need not obtain a license to speak". You can do control-F to find the location in the article. Here ...
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What distinguishes hate speech from harassment in the US?

In the United States, hate speech is protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution no matter how morally repugnant it is. But harassment is a crime and is therefore not protected. Here are ...
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454 views

Is mere dancing in public prohibited in D.C.?

Is mere dancing in public prohibited in D.C.? I.e. is there any statute or by-law that makes dancing in public per se illegal in D.C.? If not, why were these people arrested at the Jefferson ...
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Can I publish correspondence with a member of parliament?

If I were to publish an email conversation that I have with a private individual then in many countries that could be found to be an invasion of privacy (it is a conversation that the other could ...
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3answers
460 views

Can I be sued for defamation for a text message I sent?

Here's a funny situation I've just found myself in. Over the past year I've been trying to disclose to a U.S. based organization details of the foreign organization they are supporting that indicate ...
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1answer
110 views

When and how is the advocacy of violence illegal?

Today I saw a t-shirt reading "Kill a liberal, save a taxpayer." Also I have heard that the right to free speech does not extend to the right to shout "fire!" in a public theater. But if I did choose ...
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Is Schmähkritik illegal in Germany and what could happen?

Jan Böhmermann made a Schmähkritik about the president of Turkey, Erdoğan. Is that illegal, what could happen? Could Erdoğan actually sue ZDF and the satirist? What would happen, if he would do that? ...
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Is lying about a candidate protected speech in the United States?

Per Wikipedia: False statements that are on matters of public concern and that defame public figures are unprotected if either the speaker has knowledge that his statements are false, there is ...