Free Speech

Charlie Hebdo and PEN: When Free Speech Is Cheaper Than a Gala Dinner for Some

John Sargeant | Posted 30.04.2015 | UK
John Sargeant

The arrogance of those staying away is breathtaking. PEN exists to speak out for writers who are persecuted and threatened. As Salman Rushdie said, he hopes no one ever goes after the writers staying away. Still, it is easier to piss on dead cartoonists than to stand up to ISIS who crucify and behead.

Katie Hopkins Is a Cancer on Society That We Now Need to Address

David Mooney | Posted 28.04.2015 | UK Entertainment
David Mooney

I begin with a question. How far up your own arse do you need to be in order to regularly demonise groups of people just to preserve your own position...

Charlie Hebdo Deserves the PEN Honour and Why the Critics are Wrong

Karthick Ram Manoharan | Posted 28.04.2015 | UK Universities & Education
Karthick Ram Manoharan

What the liberal-left is practicing here is a worse form of Islamophobia - the fear of offending Muslim extremists. And White writers assuming that all Muslims get offended by Hebdo's cartoons - as if there are no secular, sober and sane individuals and political movements in the so-called Muslim world - is also a form of racism.

Solitary, Poor, Nasty, Brutish and Short

Clare Allington | Posted 24.04.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Clare Allington

Funny thing about grief is it hits you in waves; some days you can be tootling along quite happily then a smell, or a memory hits you, and yes this is quite embarrassing in public when you burst into tears.

Jessica Elgot

'Web Biscuits' Are Just One Reason Politicians Have Utterly Failed On Digital Policy

HuffingtonPost.com | Jessica Elgot | Posted 14.04.2015 | UK Politics

Beyond The Ballot is The Huffington Post UK's alternative take on the General Election, taking on the issues too awkward for Westminster. It focuses o...

Katie Hopkins: What Can We Do - Now That "Just Ignore Her" Is No Longer an Option?

Rob Atkinson | Posted 31.03.2015 | UK Entertainment
Rob Atkinson

So what can we do about Katie? Katie the failed "Apprentice", Katie the Met Office drop-out, Katie the shameless 'media-tart' - loathe her or hate her, you cannot deny that she is an assiduous placer of irons in her own particular fire.

Jessica Elgot

Senior Tory Doesn't Think Any Of The Leadership Favourites Will Succeed Cameron

HuffingtonPost.com | Jessica Elgot | Posted 13.04.2015 | UK Politics

Beyond The Ballot is The Huffington Post UK's alternative take on the UK General Election 2015, taking on the issues too awkward for Westminster. It f...

Are Freedom of Speech and Freedom Mutually Exclusive?

Robyn Harris | Posted 26.04.2015 | UK Universities & Education
Robyn Harris

The problem with the freedom of speech debate is not only that those who advocate it co-opt it for negative use, or that those who use it think that exercising freedom of speech and being deserving of being listened to are mutually exclusive, but is that invective and hateful language is moulded into common vernacular with the play of society's very own Get Out of Jail Free card.

Five Rules on Satire

Jacob Turner | Posted 21.04.2015 | UK Comedy
Jacob Turner

These rules aren't instructions on how to be funny. They certainly won't stop anyone taking offence. These rules are, however, a statement of what I hope is a reasonably clear moral position which preserves the right to criticise and caricature in such a way that the ideals of a liberal society are still upheld.

Copenhagen - Time for Solidarity and Supporting Free Speech

John Sargeant | Posted 17.04.2015 | UK
John Sargeant

We cannot stop being alive, we cannot stop noticing the harm religious extremism and hatred causes. We will point out what fundamentalists are trying to do. We will show the limits they try to impose. We will show how people give tacit let alone explicit support to those that wish atheists, apostates and blasphemers dead.

Freedom of Speech: The Right NOT to Say Whatever You Like

David Mooney | Posted 18.04.2015 | UK
David Mooney

You aren't being censored. The times when freedom of speech is restricted are remarkably rare and they exist for the greater good, rather than to stop you insulting whoever you like. It's probably correct that the police get involved when someone tries to post bacon through the door of a mosque, even if they claim to be exercising their right to freedom of expression.

At Goldsmiths, the Mere Threat of a Backlash Against Comedian Kate Smurthwaite Was Able to Shut Down Free Speech

Robert DG Smith | Posted 05.04.2015 | UK Universities & Education
Robert DG Smith

Students by and large support the idea of a university being a place for the free exchange of ideas, and generally have a low opinion of the wackier preoccupations of their elected representatives. But this regrettable affair is a reminder of the shallow commitment that many students have to free expression.

Free Speech and Offence - Seeking the Invisible Line

Peter Bradley | Posted 05.04.2015 | UK Politics
Peter Bradley

The debate about the balance between the freedom to express opinions and the rights of those offended by them is by no means a new one. But though it's intensified since the attacks in Paris, it's doubtful that we're any closer to knowing whether and where the line can be drawn.

More Outrage for Drawing Blood Not Cartoons Needed

John Sargeant | Posted 05.04.2015 | UK Politics
John Sargeant

The articles of a thousand words, detailing what is wrong with Charlie Hebdo continue. A quick line or two condemn the murder of the cartoonists. Then the rest of the piece that in life they were out of order to satirise and lampoon religion and the religious.

A Different Kind Of League Table: Is Your Uni One Of The 80% Stifling Free Speech?

The Huffington Post UK | Aubrey Allegretti | Posted 03.02.2015 | UK Universities & Education

Four out of five universities are actively stifling students' freedom of expression - so say the results of the UK's first free speech league table. ...

What Would Hitchens Do

Brian John Spencer | Posted 03.04.2015 | UK
Brian John Spencer

Standing in the shadow of the attack on Charlie Hebdo and western norms we need to learn from and implement those principles of free speech that Hitchens advocated.

Let's Not Repeat Past Mistakes - Restricting Free Speech will Fuel Radicalisation

Thomas Hughes | Posted 31.03.2015 | UK
Thomas Hughes

In the last few weeks EU and US talks have resulted in calls for internet providers to create a means for 'swift reporting' and removal of material that aims to incite hatred and terror - a 'reporting' mechanism which could be used to stifle legitimate, albeit often highly distasteful or offensive, speech without due process safeguards.

The Death of Free Speech

Adam Hamdy | Posted 29.03.2015 | UK Politics
Adam Hamdy

Many posed the question; how can we have free speech in a tolerant, multi-cultural society? It is precisely because we want a tolerant, multi-cultural society that the right to free speech must be absolute.

Is It Hobson's Choice Between Religious Beliefs and Free Speech?

Dr Harry Hagopian | Posted 27.03.2015 | UK
Dr Harry Hagopian

Surely, we do not have to view them as a Hobson's choice? What we should focus on instead is the harder - and much harsher - question of whether we as followers of a religion or as advocates of free speech can coexist too?

Why Page 3 and Charlie Hebdo Are Not the Same

Sam Fowles | Posted 22.03.2015 | UK
Sam Fowles

Platform is valuable commodity and the supply of privileged platforms far outstrips demand. This is precisely because very few people have the former while almost everyone has, at some point, availed themselves of one of the latter.

The No More Page 3 Campaign Is a Victory for Free Speech But Not For Feminism

Robert Sharp | Posted 23.03.2015 | UK
Robert Sharp

At first blush, the success of the No More Page 3 campaign does not look like a victory for free speech. After all, a thing that was being published, is no longer being published. The prudish censors have prevailed, right? Look again... Is the absence of naked breasts from Page 3 a victory for feminism, though? I worry that it is not.

Facebook vs. Free Speech

Philip Ellis | Posted 22.03.2015 | UK Tech
Philip Ellis

Zuckerberg's support of Charlie Hebdo was questioned during a recent Q&A session in Colombia; specifically, he was asked why he has taken an interest in this specific incident as opposed to other terrorist attacks. "This was specifically about people's freedom of expression and ability to say what they want," he says.

Live and Let Live

Miriam Brown | Posted 21.03.2015 | UK
Miriam Brown

The ability to express and the power to repress is a battle that is being fought not only here in the Western world but by thousands everywhere. It is hard to know if anyone will ever win. 'Live and let live' I say.

Why Ridiculing the Prophet Muhammad Is Europe's Oldest Tradition

Usman Butt | Posted 17.03.2015 | UK
Usman Butt

The Charlie Hebdo massacre sent shockwaves throughout the world and was widely interpreted as an attack on free speech. However, the attack on Charlie Hebdo was more than an attack on free speech; it was an attack on one of Europe's oldest traditions...

Four Free Speech Ideals That Came From the Charlie Hebdo Tragedy

Laura Blumenthal | Posted 20.03.2015 | UK
Laura Blumenthal

The tragic Charlie Hebdo massacre ignited a full and varied debate across the world on our free speech values, particularly what it means and its limitations. Below are some of the issues that came up and what we should remember...