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 […]

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 Hill – False speech: What is it good for?

During a time of war in Europe and deep political divisions in the United States, there are calls for individuals, organizations and governments to suppress speech that makes others uncomfortable, speech that is hateful, or that is considered untrue, such as fake news… … “As Jacob Mchangama notes in “Free Speech: A History From Socrates […]

CBS News: How free speech is under attack in the U.S.

America was built on the premise of free speech, but today’s news is filled with examples of limiting people’s expression – from prohibitions against misinformation, to book bans and state laws restricting how teachers can discuss such topics as racial injustice, sexual orientation, and gender identity. Correspondent David Pogue talks with writers and academics about […]

The Economist: A history of free expression charts its seesawing progress

Repression leads to liberalisation and vice versa, says Jacob Mchangama Free Speech. By Jacob Mchangama. Basic Books; 528 pages; $32 and £25 Aglobal firestorm erupted in 2005 after the publication in a Danish newspaper of 12 provocative cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad. Jacob Mchangama, a Dane and then a young lawyer, was dismayed. In the Muslim world he […]

CPJ: How social media regulation could affect the press

The United Kingdom moved a step closer to regulating social media in December when a parliamentary committee recommended major changes to the country’s Online Safety Bill so as to hold internet service providers responsible for material published on their platforms. “We need to call time on the Wild West online,” said committee chair Damian Collins. “What’s illegal […]