Sara Khorshid reports from a panel discussion that brought together former hate preachers, feminists and ordinary Arab youth to debate the limits of free speech in the new Middle East.
Helen Haft examines the case of a blogger prosecuted after an online argument and its implications for Russian free speech.
Tore Slaatta investigates Norwegian artists’ views on their freedom of expression in contemporary society.
Vanya Bhargav explains the battle behind the Indian government’s ban on a BBC documentary about a notorious gang rape.
Matthew Walton explores the deeper Buddhist context of right speech – and soul-searching on Buddhist internet message boards.
Leslie Green argues that Buddhist ideas about avoiding divisive, abusive and false speech can help us live together well in free societies
25 years after the fatwa and the fall of the Berlin Wall, Salman Rushdie discusses with Timothy Garton Ash whether there is now more or less freedom of expression in Europe, worrying developments in India and his critical view of Edward Snowden.
At the London School of Economics Students’s Union Freshers’ Fair members of the Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Student Society were asked to cover up their T-shirts displaying a Jesus and Mo cartoon. This panel discussion discusses the freedom to offend and how to balance freedom of expression and civility.
In the case of McCullen v Coakley, the US Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling about restrictions on speech around abortion clinics. Max Harris explains.
Internet Service Providers do not merely route data packets from end-to-end, but are heavily involved in monitoring their customers’ online activities. Ian Brown discusses the implications of Britain’s suggested “voluntary” opting out of “adult content”, with little parliamentary and court involvement.
Professor Jytte Klausen analyses and criticises Yale University Press’s decision to remove images of Muhammad from her scholarly book on the Danish cartoons controversy.
Kim Wilkinson examines the case of celebrated Australian artist Bill Henson, who caused controversy in 2008 with his photography that featured images of naked teenagers.
Leslie Green, a distinguished legal philosopher who has written extensively about issues of obscenity and pornography, challenges our case study on online porn filters.
How do we strike the right balance between freedom of expression and child protection? Sarah Glatte explores a proposal by the British government.
Katie Engelhart visits a shunga exhibition at the British Museum, and asks if the sexually explicit can be art. Along the way she explores issues of artistic intent and temporality.
We regularly highlight comments that have made an impression on us. FSD user Perreaoult argues that Art has to be completely free as an instrument of expression.
Protests held by far right groups in ethnically diverse areas are provocation, but banning them can have undesired effects. Josh Black looks at a ban on the English Defence League in East London.
The forthcoming trial of Kenyan broadcaster Joshua Arap Sang poses vital questions about the connections between words and violence, argues Katherine Bruce-Lockhart.
Did the European Court of Human Rights wrongly considered the distribution of child pornography to be an exercise of freedom of expression in the case Karttunen v. Finland, asks Rónán Ó Fathaigh.
Should a world famous actress be allowed to denounce an ‘overpopulation’ by foreigners? By Michèle Finck.
Kerem Oktem introduces our translation of a column by Hasan Cemal, which his newspaper, Milliyet, refused to print.
A famous case of state censorship in Austria highlights the tendency of governments to pander to the majority, leaving controversial views unprotected. By Michele Finck.
Alan Rusbridger, editor-in-chief of the Guardian, argues that Britain needs both a free press and reform of its failed regulatory system. Since this will require both time and openness, a new independent press regulator should therefore be given a year’s trial run.
At the European Court of Human Rights, the case of I.A. against Turkey in 2005 acted as a controversial precedent for limiting Article 10’s definition of freedom of expression in the name of religion, explains Michele Finck.
On 10 October 2012 the Canadian teenager Amanda Todd committed suicide after years of cyber-bullying and harassment. Judith Bruhn describes a shocking case.
Peter Bradley describes a British initiative promoting free expression, public debate and active citizenship.
Islam, Christianity and Judaism are often accused of wanting to restrict free speech. Dominic Burbidge suggests a radically different perspective, from inside the thought-system of the Abrahamic faiths.
In the landmark case of New York Times v Sullivan, in 1964, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that criticism of public officials must be protected, even if some of the claims were inaccurate. Jeff Howard explains.
Indian journalist and writer Tarun Tejpal speaks about development and corruption in India, and the role of investigative journalism.
Type ‘Bettina Wulff’, the name of a former German president’s wife, into Google and the autocomplete function will add ‘escort’. Is this algorithmic addition a form of defamation? Sebastian Huempfer explores the case.
Judith Bruhn explores the theory and practice of privacy in Europe and whether a court injunction was enough to salvage the Duchess of Cambridge’s privacy.
The WCITLeaks.org co-founder discusses how anonymous uploads to his website are shedding light on the upcoming World Conference on International Telecommunications.
Was punk band Pussy Riot’s anti-Putin performance in a Moscow church ‘religious hatred hooliganism’ or an artistic form of political dissent? Olga Shvarova considers the case.
Acclaimed Turkish author Elif Shafak discusses the limits to free speech, the cosmopolitanism of her novels and the art of coexistence.
In 2011, a South African court banned the anti-apartheid song “Shoot the Boer” after ruling it hate speech, writes Nimi Hoffmann.
The German comedian Serdar Somuncu recites extracts from Mein Kampf to highlight the absurdity of Hitler’s propaganda, writes Sebastian Huempfer.
While China’s human flesh search engines can help reveal government corruption they can also be used to humiliate ordinary citizens, writes Judith Bruhn.
In 2008, six British ISPs blocked access to a Wikipedia page featuring an album cover with an image of a prepubescent naked girl, writes Maryam Omidi.
Maryam Omidi takes a look at banned clothing around the world – and concludes that women tend to be the target of dogmatic dress codes.
A leaked sex video resulted in Iranian actress Zahra Amir Ebrahimi fleeing the country to avoid prosecution, writes Fatemeh Shams Esmaeili.
A pro-life campaigner and a pro-choice activist go head-to-head in this debate about the rise of US-style anti-abortion protests outside clinics in the UK.
The public nature of the Leveson Inquiry into the phone-hacking scandal has been exemplary, writes Timothy Garton Ash.
History is a sensitive issue in China with some of it desperately remembered and some, deliberately forgotten, writes Judith Bruhn.
Restrictions on hate speech are not a means of tackling bigotry but of rebranding often obnoxious ideas or arguments are immoral, argues writer Kenan Malik.
Killer Anders Behring Breivik’s testimony should be broadcast live to deter extremism, argues Anne Ardem, executive editor at Norwegian state broadcaster NRK.
In the first past of this debate, research fellow Kerem Öktem argues that an individual’s understanding of free speech is shaped by their personal history and geography.
A Japanese video game that involved raping women was banned three years after its creation following an international outcry by women’s groups, writes Judith Bruhn.
In March 2012, self-proclaimed jihadist Mohammed Merah strapped a camera to his chest before killing seven people in France. Al-Jazeera TV channel opted not to show the footage, writes Jeff Howard.
In October 2001, an Evangelical Christian preacher called Harry Hammond held up a placard saying, “Stop Immorality, Stop Homosexuality, Stop Lesbianism.” When Hammond refused to stop, a policeman arrested him. Timothy Garton Ash discusses an instructive case.
“The one thing not at issue in the Jaipur controversy was some theologically motivated attack on the freedom of expression,” writes historian Faisal Devji.
The director of the Moral Courage Project says so-called “respect” for Muslims is often lined with fear and “low expectations” of those practising the faith.
Naguib Sawiris was accused of contempt for tweeting an image of Mickey and Minnie Mouse, respectively sporting a bushy beard and veil, writes Jacob Amis
The co-chair of the German Green Party tells Free Speech Debate that fascist ideologies cannot be banned and must be confronted in a democratic way.