Types of Expressions

Types of Expressions

The resources on this Module explore the nature and extent of freedom of expression through a focus on specific speech or speakers, such as political speech, art, or protest.  The readings will demonstrate the existence of a range of standards regarding their protection and regulation, largely enshrined in many regional and country practices, although not all.

10 items found, showing 1 - 10

Speech and Public Officials

Author: Gabi Mocatta, Shaneka Saville, Nicholas Payne, Jerry Lai, Lova Jansson, and Kristy Hess
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The report, funded by the Earth Journalism Network at Internews, interrogates the global state of climate and environmental journalism in the context of rapidly spreading mis- and disinformation, jurisdictions repressing media freedom, lack of resources and access to data, and risks that accompany climate reporters and cause self-censorship. The study includes a literature review, methodology outline, and results based on the multi-language survey and semi-structured interviews, totaling 744 survey respondents and 74 journalists interviewed. Half of the respondents said they had experienced verbal threats, almost a third of them had been subjected to legal threats or lawsuits, while another third had received threats from governments – and these are only some of the alarming findings. The report concludes with recommendations for funding organizations, newsrooms, journalists, and further research.  

Gabi Mocatta, Shaneka Saville, Nicholas Payne, Jerry Lai, Lova Jansson, and Kristy Hess. Covering the Planet: Assessing the State of Climate and Environmental Journalism Globally. Internews/Earth Journalism Network, 2024. https://earthjournalism.net/sites/default/files/2024-06/covering-the-planet-assessing-the-state-of-climate-and-environmental-journalism-globally-report3_1.pdf

Author: Columbia Global Freedom of Expression
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Here you will find the Syllabus for the MOOC 'Freedom of Expression in the Age of Globalization' created by Columbia Global Freedom of Expression. This course will examine the norms, institutions and forces that altogether have founded a global system of protection for freedom of expression and information. The Foundational Course will include four main segments. It will first survey the thinking of 19th century and contemporary political theorists, Judges in the early years of the twentieth century, and economists to discover why freedom of expression and information matters, and the values and principles that are established through free speech. The second will review the emergence of an international system of protection for freedom of expression, including the international and regional institutions and standards, and the role of international courts. The third and fourth class will focus on the scope of freedom of expression and on its legitimate limits. We will provide answer two key questions: What kind of speech is protected under international standards? What kind of speech may be restricted by Governments and how can it be legally restricted?

Author: UNESCO
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"With [a] global mandate to protect 'the free flow of ideas by word and image', UNESCO acts worldwide to advance fundamental freedoms, and to ensure that obligations are fulfilled and rights are exercised. [UNESCO works] to increase the knowledge and capacities of judiciary members on international and regional standards on freedom of expression and the safety of journalists. As a result, since 2013, more than 18,000 judicial operators and civil society representatives in Latin America, Africa and the Arab region have been trained on these issues. This toolkit on international standards for freedom of expression builds on these efforts, aiming to give a global scope to this endeavour. By reinforcing the knowledge and capacities of the judiciary, the toolkit effectively contributes to the implementation of the UN Plan of Action on the Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity, adopted by the UN Chief Executives Board in 2012 and recognised by the UN General Assembly in 2013. The Plan of Action aims to create "a free and safe environment for journalists and media workers in both conflict and non-conflict situations, with a view to strengthening peace, democracy and development worldwide". [It is hoped] that this toolkit will be a useful tool for judges, public prosecutors, judicial training institutes, academics and judicial actors at large, so that respect for freedom of expression, public access to information, and the safety of journalists become an integral part of efforts to guarantee and promote human rights in our societies."

UNESCO. “Global Toolkit for Judicial Actors: International Legal Standards on Freedom of Expression, Access to Information and Safety of Journalists”. 2021. https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000378755. 

Author: Jeremy Bentham
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Bentham’s statement of press freedom argues to permit political associations/assemblies in public and resistance to governmental authority as a check to abuse of power. Special mention of permitting criticism, including of state officials, and a discussion of how sedition and defamation of public officials should be addressed.

Bentham, Jeremy. The Works of Jeremy Bentham, published under the Superintendence of his Executor, John Bowring (Edinburgh: William Tait, 1838-1843). 11 vols. Vol. 2. Available from http://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/1921

Author: UN Special Rapporteur Frank La Rue
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The report (A/HRC/26/30) “focuses on the realization of the right to freedom of opinion and expression in electoral contexts, paying particular attention to the establishment and enforcement of legal instruments regulating political communications. [The Special Rapporteur] details the human rights framework applicable to the question of freedom of opinion and expression in political communications and electoral processes. [T]hen describes common violations of the right to freedom of opinion and expression in electoral periods. Finally, [p]rovides recommendations on the alignment of national legal frameworks to the most relevant international human rights standards, emphasizing the importance of promoting pluralism, transparency and accountability.” 

UN, Human Rights Council, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, Frank La Rue. Report on the right to freedom of expression in electoral contexts. A/HRC/26/30. 2 July 2014.

Author: Columbia Global Freedom of Expression, Agnès Callamard
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In this segment of the MOOC 'Freedom of Expression in the Age of Globalization' created by Columbia Global Freedom of Expression, Agnès Callamard focuses on the implications of the protection for public and political officials. Indeed in the right to political expression is the object of enhanced protection. This means that political officials themselves can be the object of greater, possibly even offensive criticism than the average citizen.

Author: IACmHR, SRFoE Catalina Botero
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“The objective of this publication is to present inter-American jurisprudence that defines the scope and content of this right in a systematic and updated way. Among the most important topics it highlights: the importance, function, and characteristics of the right to freedom of expression, as well as the types of speech protected; the prohibition of censorship and indirect restrictions; the protection of journalists and social communications media; the exercise of freedom of expression by public officials; and freedom of expression in the area of electoral processes.”

OAS, IACmHR, Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression, Catalina Botero. The Inter-American Legal Framework Regarding the Right to Freedom of Expression. OEA/Ser.L/V/II. CIDH/RELE/INF. 2/09. 30 December 2009

Author: Catalina Botero Marino, Federico Guzmán Duque, Sofía Jaramillo Otoya, Salomé Gómez Upegui
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“This guide was designed as a basic and synthetic input to help judges and legal practitioners across the Americas who must apply international (especially inter-American) standards that enshrine and protect the fundamental right to freedom of expression.” Available only in Spanish.

C. Botero Marino, F. Guzmán Duque, S. Jaramillo Otoya, S. Gómez Upegui. El Derecho A La Libertad De Expresión: Curso avanzado para jueces y operadores jurídicos en las Américas: Guía curricular y materiales de estudio. July 2017.

Author: Media Legal Defence Initiative
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"This manual has been produced as a resource material for training workshops on media and freedom of expression law. It contains resources and background material to help trainers prepare and participants to understand the issues being discussed [...] The manual and training presentations are aimed at an audience of lawyers, with experience of litigation, but not necessarily of media, freedom of expression or human rights law. It covers international and comparative law only, and should be supplemented with relevant national law standards for the country in which they are being used.” 

Media Legal Defence Initiative. Training Manual on international and comparative media and freedom of expression law (2013).

Author: Christian Schwieter and Milan Gandhi
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A collaboration between the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom and the Institute for Strategic Dialogue (ISD), the paper interrogates political communication and media trust in the age of AI, along with possible technical and policy solutions. ISD Research Fellows Christian Schwieter and Milan Gandhi start by explaining generative AI systems and survey ways through which political actors have been resorting to AI tools. The report builds on the empirical analysis and tailors its insights for policymakers. One of the recommendations is to “[r]aise awareness of how seemingly non-political uses of generative AI can be exploited for politics, in particular the creation of non-consensual intimate content.” After evaluating emerging solutions, including legislation, the authors conclude with an emphasis on the importance of “restoring citizens’ trust in democratic institutions” and stress that technology regulation and reduction of disinformation are solutions of only a partial nature.

Christian Schwieter, Milan Gandhi. Disinform: Political Communication and Media Trust in the Age of Generative AI. Potsdam: Friedrich-Naumann-Stiftung für die Freiheit, 2024. https://www.isdglobal.org/wp-content/uploads/2024/03/Political-Communication-and-Media-Trust-in-the-Age-of-Generative-AI.pdf