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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166 views

Is the cop right? Is it OK to harass people, but only as long as it's non-sexual?

(The protagonist of this clip, the "bagel guy", went viral recently in someone else's video) In this Youtube video (now removed, Twitter copy) a cop tells him it's not illegal to harass people, but ...
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Does using a spell checker online mean I'm automated and required to disclose myself as a bot to California?

Stewart's test for obscenity: "I know it when I see it", comes to mind when I read articles about Californias bot disclosure law. Specifically, I wonder what makes me a bot? Under the statute, a “...
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50 views

Ontario Human Rights Code vs. Canadian Human Rights Act and whether either compel speech

My first question is what's the difference between the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Ontario Human Rights Code? Is one simply federal and the other state law? Also, I was reading the following ...
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Sweden Freedom of Press Act; Definition of Compilation of Documents

I have been informed by a Swedish University that their students' course evaluation feedback and course evaluation reports are official public documents subject to the freedom of the press act. I ...
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52 views

Is it illegal in the United States for a journalist to take photographs of a letter of correspondence with a foreign official?

This was inspired by this question asked on Politics.SE here: https://politics.stackexchange.com/questions/42357/can-a-us-president-have-someone-sent-to-prison and the linked incident: https://www....
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93 views

What do “constitutional” and “unconstitutional” really mean in the US?

People in the US often talk about how some laws, decisions, ruling, executive orders are "unconstitutional", but what does that word mean? Does "constitutional" mean "obeying only the Constitution", ...
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108 views

Is there a way to hold someone criminally liable for the factual veracity of statements made outside of court or other official proceeding?

I am not talking about criminal libel or defamation in jurisdiction where such a thing exists - rather, is there a modern equivalent of an oath ? Can a talk show host for example ask an interviewee ...
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Is making a public comment about a girl's breasts illegal?

From a Washington Post's article about Columbine HS: A similar event happened at a Columbine wrestling match at Arvada High School. Pyne, "in front of everyone," said Harwick, broadcast to all ...
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165 views

Are private social-media companies violating our Free Speech rights?

There's been a lot of talk about social media companies like Facebook, and their occasional removal of user content. This removal is unilateral and not subject to any sort of judicial review, so it's ...
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406 views

Is the 21st century's idea of “freedom of speech” based on precedent?

Reading the first amendment strictly through a textualist lens it is understood that Congress cannot limit our speech, but the first amendment does not say anything about companies limiting it, or ...
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129 views

GDPR: Can a website not process personal data?

I want to have a website where I publish my own articles. When a user requests a webpage, I receive an HTTP request from their browser, which contains the IP. Now, for a split second while the ...
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119 views

Do some U.S. states' constitutions interpret the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment differently?

Do some U.S. states' constitutions interpret the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment differently? If so, what do they say?
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557 views

Does the U.S. Constitution's First Ammendment protect false speech?

Does the U.S. Constitution's First Ammendment protect false speech? In other words, does it give a citizen or the press a right to spread falsehoods publicly?
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What makes laws against wearing masks constitutional?

Related to this question, "Does a statute of limitation apply to Virginia's mask law?"; how does the law in question pass constitutional muster? The law states: It shall be unlawful for any person ...
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447 views

Is it illegal to view voyeur videos

I basically have 3 questions 1) Is it legal to view voyeuristic videos of women changing or showering that were filmed without their consent on the internet as long as the woman in question is over ...
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109 views

Companies discriminating based off Political Views? Similarity to Religious Views?

There are frequently reports of companies that are refusing to serve customers who support a certain political party (so a company run by Democrats refuses to accept a Trump supporter as a customer or ...
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163 views

Can I object to a flight attendant praising TV characters for 5 minutes?

During a domestic flight, one of the flight attendants started making rather annoying praises of them being a fan of Disney and Mickey Mouse, Mickey Mouse' birthday, and asking whether anyone was ...
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441 views

Is the removal of Jim Acosta's White House press pass a violation of the 1st Amendment?

Jim Acosta of CNN asked President Trump a question. Trump ordered him to put the mike down, and a young intern tried to take it off him. Acosta's press pass was subsequently revoked. Let's assume the ...
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216 views

Is 18 USC §911 (false claim to US citizenship) still considered constitutional?

This statute reads: Whoever falsely and willfully represents himself to be a citizen of the United States shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both. There is ...
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1answer
147 views

Is Roger Ver punished for 10 months in Prison Because of his Speech?

http://voluntaryist.com/howibecame/rogerver.html#.W9gtcuKYNhF Is there a precedent? He claimed that others doing the same thing are given a slap on the wrist and only him get sent to jail. How ...
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2answers
252 views

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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3answers
137 views

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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1answer
126 views

Can private schools in CA require a uniform?

California has what's known as Leonard's law that protects free speech when on a private school campus, whereas the rest of the country says private schools can control speech on their campuses. I'm ...
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Guidelines on insulting U.S. state flags

According to the Nebraska Secretary of State's website, Insulting the flag is forbidden. This statement begs many questions, like "What constitutes an insult," "Does the law apply only to Nebraska ...
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3answers
4k 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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132 views

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 is 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 I sold soda and claimed that ...
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128 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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64 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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206 views

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
153 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
2k 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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1answer
360 views

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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383 views

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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153 views

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
188 views

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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2answers
111 views

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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579 views

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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152 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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307 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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1answer
127 views

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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155 views

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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207 views

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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150 views

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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101 views

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
237 views

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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221 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?