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

Protest and Freedom of Association

Author: Lisa Chamberlain
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"Many human rights have a dual value in that their realisation is both an important end, and a means to enable the realisation of other rights. The effective implementation of these kinds of rights is thus particularly important for advancing rights-based democracy. However, in practice, the implementation of such rights is often problematic. The article examines access to information and protest as examples of such ‘enabling’ rights. Drawing on the experience of communities and civil society organisations, it identifies and discusses some striking similarities in the way in which the legislation promulgated to give effect to these two rights in South Africa is being implemented, and argues that the problematic implementation of legislation is having the effect of thwarting these rights, rather than promoting them. Further, it argues that the existence of such striking similarities may point to a more systemic problem of civil and political rights failing to enable the realisation of socio-economic rights."

Chamberlain, Lisa. “Assessing enabling rights: Striking similarities in troubling implementation of the rights to protest and access to information in South Africa” African Human Rights Law Journal 16, no. 2 (2016): 365-384.

Author: IACtHR
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“[T]he Government of Costa Rica […] submitted to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights […] an advisory opinion request relating to the interpretation of Articles 13 [Freedom of thought and expression] and 29 [Restrictions Regarding Interpretation] of the American Convention on Human Rights […] as they affect the compulsory membership in an association prescribed by law for the practice of journalism […]. The request also sought the Court's interpretation relating to the compatibility of Law No. 4420 of September 22, 1969, Organic Law of the Colegio de Periodistas (Association of Journalists) of Costa Rica […], with the provisions of the aforementioned articles.”

IACtHR, Compulsory Membership in an Association Prescribed by Law for the Practice of Journalism. Advisory Opinion OC-5/85. Series A, No. 5. 13 November 1985

Author: Maina Kiai
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"The purpose of FOAA Online! is to provide easily accessible legal arguments to assist lawyers, activists and judges involved in freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of association (FOAA) cases. The site is organized per thematic topic or sub-question in order to direct users as straightforwardly as possible to relevant legal arguments. The FOAA Q&A assists users to link actual facts and incidents to pertinent legal questions. The website focuses on the most widespread issues experienced by those exercising their FOAA rights around the world." To see FOAA Online! in its native Web format, go to: http://freeassembly.net/foaa-online

Author: UN SRFPAA Maina Kiai
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"This document summarizes three general principles under international human rights norms and standards regarding the ability of civil society to seek, receive and use resources. The left hand column provides arguments supporting specific aspects of each principle, while the right hand column provides the legal basis or background for the argument. Where relevant, hyperlinks are provided to original sources."

Author: Amnesty International
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This short course 'Human Rights: The Right to Freedom of Expression' created by Amnesty International "will equip you with the knowledge to understand and claim your right to freedom of expression, and the skills and confidence to take action to defend it. Learn from the experts at Amnesty International how to claim and defend your rights in this human rights course. You will be challenged to think critically and devise effective actions to defend the human rights of others. You will be able to adapt the human rights of freedom of expression, association and assembly to real life situations and come face-to-face with human rights activists on the front line of human rights defense." "The course ran from 17 November to 8 December 2015 and remains online for you to browse or refresh your knowledge in archive mode."

Author: Association for Progressive Communications
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"The Internet rights are human rights is a series of training modules concerned with the relationship between human rights, ICTs and the internet. These modules are intended to help those who work on human rights and/or ICTs, and others with an interest in the issues, to understand ways in which the internet is affecting the enjoyment and protection of rights – now and in the future – and explore how these affect their work." The modules are: Introduction to Human rights, ICTs and the internet; Freedom of association and freedom of assembly; Freedom of expression and freedom of information;The right to privacy.

Association for Progressive Communications, Internet rights are human rights, 2013, http://www.itrainonline.org/itrainonline/mmtk/irhr.shtml 

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

Promoting dialogue between the European Court of Human Rights and the media freedom community

Author: European Centre for Press and Media Freedom
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"The European Centre for Press and Media Freedom with the support of Council of the Europe (CoE) organised the conference “Promoting dialogue between the European Court of Human Rights and the media freedom community. Freedom of expression and the role and case law of the European Court of Human Rights: developments and challenges”. The three key themes of this conference were: (1) defamation, privacy and the processing of personal data, (2) investigative journalism in relation to newsgathering, access to official documents and the importance of the protection of sources and whistleblowers, as well as (3) the right to protest and the role of the media during protests. The conference resulted in fruitful discussions of the ECtHR’s recent case law relating to freedom of expression, media and journalism. The keynote speakers, the moderators, the speakers and participants played a crucial role on the productive dialogue between judges and civil society. These discussions have been collected and presented in this conference e-book in form of conclusions. In addition, unedited speeches and presentations of the speakers are incorporated in this publication. The conference was broadcast live and video links to all speakers’ presentations are included as well. Lastly, a summary of social media coverage is also integrated."

European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF), Promoting dialogue between the European Court of Human Rights and the media freedom community, Conference e-book, 2017.

Author: IACmHR, Edison Lanza
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Social protest is recognized and protected as intrinsic to the existence and consolidation of democracies by the inter-American system of human rights. As per the instruments of the inter-American system, the rights to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly, and association guarantee and protect individual and collective forms of public expression of opinions, dissent, demand for compliance with human rights, and affirmation of the historically marginalized groups in society. Despite such recognition, the region continues to repress and limit the exercise of these rights in the public sphere, due to the notion of citizen mobilization being disruptive for public order or a threat to the stability of democratic institutions. The objective of this report, therefore, is to “contribute to a better understanding of State obligations aimed at guaranteeing, protecting, and facilitating public protests and demonstrations, as well as the standards that should frame the progressive use of force—and as a last resort—in protest contexts”. The report discusses: guiding principles, applicable legal framework, obligation to respect rights, obligation to protect and facilitate, obligation to guarantee rights, protests and the internet, access to information, states of emergency, and conclusions and recommendations. 

OAS, IACmHR, Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression, Edison Lanza. Protest and Human Rights. OEA/SER.L/V/II. CIDH/RELE/INF.22/19. September 2019.

Author: IACmHR, Eduardo Bertoni
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The report  “describes the jurisprudence of various systems for protection of human rights regarding public protests and their possible limitations. The objective was to contribute to interpretation of public protests as an exercise of freedom of expression and freedom of assembly in the framework of the Inter-American System.”

OAS, IACmHR, Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression, Eduardo Bertoni. Public Demonstrations as an Exercise of Freedom of Expression and Freedom of Assembly. OEA/Ser.L/V/II.124 Doc. 7. 27 February 2006