Accurate, Focused Research on Law, Technology and Knowledge Discovery Since 2002

Category Archives: Free Speech

MIT announces prize for responsible civil disobedience

“On July 21, 2016 we announced the creation of a $250K cash prize award for responsible disobedience. This idea came after a realization that there’s a widespread frustration from people trying to figure out how can we effectively harness responsible, ethical disobedience aimed at challenging our norms, rules, or laws to benefit society. And so we begin the process of searching for the first MIT Media Lab Disobedience Award recipient. The award will go to a living person or group engaged in what we believe is extraordinary disobedience for the benefit of society. Specifically, we’d like to call out action that seeks to change society in positive ways and is consistent with a set of key principles. These principles include non-violence, creativity, courage, and taking responsibility for one’s actions. We’re seeking both expected and unexpected nominees. This could include–but isn’t limited to–those engaged in scientific research, civil rights, freedom of speech, human rights, and the freedom to innovate.”

Knight Foundation – Forecasting Freedom of Information

Forecasting Freedom of Information – Why it faces problems—and how experts say they could be solved, March 2017 — By David Cuillier, University of Arizona School of Journalism. A study commissioned by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. “People must have access to reliable public information to make informed decisions and hold their… Continue Reading

Study – Feminism and Gender Equality Around the World

Ipsos Global Advisor/Public Affairs Study  – “Four in ten women around the world say they don’t have equality with men or the freedom to reach their full dreams and aspirations…Most believe in equal rights – butfew think it exists…in most countries, women are more likely to describe themselves as feminist – especially Britain, South Africa,… Continue Reading

Large Majorities See Checks and Balances, Right to Protest as Essential for Democracy

77% say it would be ‘too risky’ to give presidents more power – “Large majorities of the public, Republicans and Democrats alike, say open and fair elections and a system of governmental checks and balances are essential to maintaining a strong democracy in the United States. However, there is less consensus about the importance of… Continue Reading

Paper – Right to Be Forgotten: Much Ado About Nothing

Frosio, Giancarlo F., Right to Be Forgotten: Much Ado About Nothing (January 31, 2017). 15(2) Colorado Technology Law Journal (2017 Forthcoming). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2908993 “In the information society, the role of private sector entities in gathering information for and about users has long been a most critical issue. Therefore, intermediaries have become a main… Continue Reading

Microsoft Corporation v. DOJ on sneak-and-peek searches

Via Bloomberg – “Microsoft Corp. persuaded a judge not to let the U.S. government out of a lawsuit alleging the company’s free-speech rights are violated by a law that blocks it from alerting users to the clandestine interception of their e-mails. The judge said Microsoft has at least made a plausible argument that federal law… Continue Reading

Politico – Federal workers turn to encryption to thwart Trump

Via Politico: “Federal employees worried that President Donald Trump will gut their agencies are creating new email addresses, signing up for encrypted messaging apps and looking for other, protected ways to push back against the new administration’s agenda. Whether inside the Environmental Protection Agency, within the Foreign Service, on the edges of the Labor Department… Continue Reading

Reporters Committee releases report on Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch

February 2, 2017 – “U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch does not have an extensive history of cases involving free speech, free press, and freedom of information issues, but the opinions he authored or joined during his more than 10 years on the Tenth Circuit that do touch upon those issues reflect the application of… Continue Reading

Human Rights Watch World Report 2017

“In the 687-page World Report, its 27th edition, Human Rights Watch reviews human rights practices in more than 90 countries. In his introductory essay, Executive Director Kenneth Roth writes that a new generation of authoritarian populists seeks to overturn the concept of human rights protections, treating rights not as an essential check on official power… Continue Reading

Tech Giants Partner in Effort to Fight Online Terror Content

News release: “Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube are coming together to help curb the spread of terrorist content online. There is no place for content that promotes terrorism on our hosted consumer services. When alerted, we take swift action against this kind of content in accordance with our respective policies. Starting today, we commit to… Continue Reading

The Leaky Leviathan: Why the Government Condemns and Condones Unlawful Disclosures of Information

The Leaky Leviathan: Why the Government Condemns and Condones Unlawful Disclosures of Information. David E. Pozen. Dec 20, 2013. 127 Harv. L. Rev. 512. “The United States government leaks like a sieve. Presidents denounce the constant flow of classified information to the media from unauthorized, anonymous sources. National security professionals decry the consequences. And yet… Continue Reading

EFF – Librarians, Act Now to Protect Your Users

EFF Posting: “Books checked out from a library and terms searched on library computers can reveal a teenager’s questions about sexual orientation, a neighbor’s religious leanings, or a student’s political interests. Libraries across the country, particularly public libraries, make it part of their mission to serve the most vulnerable and underserved user groups, including users… Continue Reading