Persuasion: Banning Hate Speech Won’t End Extremist Violence

The shooting in Buffalo last month was but the latest example of terrorist attacks becoming a lethal outlet for white supremacist grievances. What connects much of this violent right-wing extremism is that the perpetrators are radicalized or share their ideas—sometimes even stream their terrorist attacks—online. In fact, several terrorists have explicitly cited other terrorists as inspiration for their deadly deeds in […]

The British Library: Freedom of the Press – The First Principle of News

Freedom of speech is hailed as the ‘first freedom’, the bedrock of democracy, but it is subject to erosion in times of upheaval. The British Library holds the earliest plea for free speech, Milton’s Areopagitica, which argues against censorship and in favour of ‘freedom to choose, for reason is but choosing’. But according to Freedom […]

Spectator Australia: Don’t mention the swastika

Banning political symbols sets a dangerous precedent Having experienced the warmth and openness of Victorians, the idea of the Garden State as a stomping ground for neo-Nazi efforts to establish a Fourth Reich Down Under seems bizarre. Yet, Victoria is set to enact a law banning the public display of Nazi swastikas ‘to stamp out […]

Reuters: From Musk to Brussels – three leading experts on the future of free speech online

Will Tesla’s founder and EU new laws change social media forever? Jacob Mchangama, Ethan Zuckerman and Jennifer Petersen weigh in Free speech: are platforms different? Protected by law (albeit differently) both in the EU and in the US, freedom of speech, and the extent to which this fundamental right applies to what we post online, is one of […]

Fortune: Elon Musk says he’s ‘exactly aligned’ with Europe’s new rules for online content. But the law may threaten his free speech ideals

The rules Breton was referring to are embedded in a recently-agreed EU law called the Digital Services Act (DSA), which Breton, the internal market commissioner, helped design. Soon, the law will govern how Twitter must remove content from its platform—and if the U.S. firm doesn’t play ball, Breton warned, it could face mega-fines and perhaps […]

The Independent: What will Elon Musk’s takeover of Twitter mean for free speech?

In 2017, a group of tech executives prostrated themselves before hostile British MPs who demanded tougher action on hate speech. Twitter´s representative announced that the platform was abandoning its “John Stuart Mill-style philosophy“, declaring it was “no longer possible to stand up for all speech”. Yet, Elon Musk´s recent acquisition of Twitter for $44bn is premised on […]

Foreign Policy: The Real Threat to Social Media Is Europe

The EU is passing legislation that will weaken free speech laws beyond the breaking point. Elon Musk’s acquisition of Twitter has caused fear and loathing among pundits and politicians wary of his vow to revert the platform to its position as “the free speech wing of the free speech party.” These fearful elites might seek solace in Europe, where Musk’s techno-utopian […]