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>First Amendment Trends

Foreword
The First Amendment: Rock Star of the American Constitution

By Floyd Abrams...  American First Amendment law, former United States solicitor general and associate justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts Charles Fried has rightly said, “is the most libertarian and speech protective of any liberal democratic regime.” As such, its consequences and implications are profound. The exceptionalism of the United States in the [...]

By |2018-09-27T16:51:40+00:00October 18th, 2017|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on Foreword
The First Amendment: Rock Star of the American Constitution

Old Tools in Different Hands: Speech Regulation on Campus

By Greg Lukianoff and Adam Goldstein… Free speech on campus has been in the news recently, and we are happy to see the fight our organization, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), has been waging for almost 20 years get the attention it deserves. To get to the bottom of the disturbing, illiberal [...]

By |2018-09-27T20:48:00+00:00September 27th, 2018|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on Old Tools in Different Hands: Speech Regulation on Campus

Wearing Political Messages Inside a Polling Place

By Rodney Smolla… As this year’s Supreme Court term turns to the stretch run, one of the most interesting cases to watch will be Minnesota Voters Alliance v. Mansky (Docket No. 16-1435). The case is a challenge to a Minnesota law challenging what citizens may wear when they go to polling places to vote. The [...]

By |2018-09-27T16:46:44+00:00May 1st, 2018|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on Wearing Political Messages Inside a Polling Place

The Epistemic and Moral Dimensions of Fake News and the First Amendment

By Ashley Messenger...  “Fake news” is a term that has been applied to many different things (including satire and genuine news reports that turn out to be incorrect). However, for purposes of this article, I am using the term to refer to speech that purports to be a true journalistic news report but in fact [...]

By |2018-09-27T16:47:32+00:00March 28th, 2018|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on The Epistemic and Moral Dimensions of Fake News and the First Amendment

End Discrimination Against Digital Billboards

By David L. Hudson, Jr....  Digital billboards represent an improved and exciting medium of communication yet face continued discrimination from city and county ordinances across the country. Digital billboards employ LED technology, illuminating multiple messages that are easy to see. Yet the technology and speech-enhancing capabilities are ignored. Digital billboards have been met with a [...]

By |2018-09-27T16:48:03+00:00November 27th, 2017|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on End Discrimination Against Digital Billboards

Supporting the First Amendment: More Than Just Talk?

By Robert Corn-Revere…  As usual, the story began with some unhinged tweets from the president: “With all of the Fake News coming out of NBC and the Networks, at what point is it appropriate to challenge their License? Bad for country!” Lest he be misunderstood, Trump followed his first volley with this: “Network news has [...]

By |2018-09-27T16:56:05+00:00November 15th, 2017|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on Supporting the First Amendment: More Than Just Talk?

Free Expression and Privacy: Can New European Laws Reach U.S. Publishers?

By Kurt Wimmer...  Since the advent of publishing on the Internet, media companies have been concerned about the reach of international jurisdiction over U.S. publishers. Repeatedly, media companies with few contacts outside of the United States have been subjected to the jurisdiction of distant courts in countries from Australia to Zimbabwe applying their own domestic [...]

By |2018-09-27T16:49:02+00:00November 9th, 2017|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on Free Expression and Privacy: Can New European Laws Reach U.S. Publishers?

But Is It ‘Speech’?

By Laurence H. Winer...  A Sunday “Peanuts” comic strip (from a bygone era) begins with Charlie Brown and friends on the baseball diamond. The character “Rerun,” too small to play, sits dejected on the sidelines. But when the ball bounces his way, Rerun scoops up his “souvenir” and scampers off with it. The gang immediately [...]

By |2018-09-27T16:49:31+00:00October 18th, 2017|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on But Is It ‘Speech’?

Free Speech, Fake News, and Social Media

By Rod Smolla...  Is It the Medium or the Message? “The medium is the message,” wrote the American philosopher Marshall McLuhan.[1]   From the inception of the Internet, American law has been vexed by whether to follow McLuhan’s dictum, or instead insist on its opposite. In fashioning the constitutional, common-law, and statutory doctrines that govern liability [...]

By |2018-09-27T16:57:36+00:00October 18th, 2017|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on Free Speech, Fake News, and Social Media

Truth of Facts Underlying Attribution to a Source: An Absolute Defense in Public Official Libel Context

By John Bussian...  In the lore of the American First Amendment, truth as a defense to libel is an article of faith.  As it should be.  Since the fabled 1735 trial of New York publisher John Peter Zenger, there has not been a serious, much less a successful effort to argue that truth of the underlying [...]

By |2018-09-27T16:51:16+00:00October 18th, 2017|First Amendment Trends|Comments Off on Truth of Facts Underlying Attribution to a Source: An Absolute Defense in Public Official Libel Context