Freedom of Expression.

Fake Transparency: The Trend Towards 'Secure Reading Rooms'

Molly Scott Cato | Posted 29.09.2016 | UK Politics
Molly Scott Cato

This is why as we marked the occasion of Right to Know Day, I joined the protest outside this latest reading room in Brussels. It is totally inappropriate for private companies to control transparency in this way and to put their profits ahead of our right to information. We need to put the "freedom" back into "freedom of information." so that we know how our health and environment might be impacted. As policy makers we have a right to verify or challenge findings and to work for the public good.

A Muslim Woman's Beach "Fashion Faux Pas"

Nishaat Ismail | Posted 25.08.2016 | UK
Nishaat Ismail

This may seem like a frivolous debate to have amidst ravaging wars across the globe and unprecedented levels of political uncertainty in Britain and across Europe but lets no longer glaze our words with honey and accept that this policing of Muslim women's attire is symptomatic of an entrenched issue France has with Islam.

Petitions and the Curse of Crowdsplaining

Gabriel Webber | Posted 28.06.2016 | UK Politics
Gabriel Webber

Petitions are one of the worst forms of 'crowdsplaining' and they really annoy me. I don't know whether they're so irksome because they're utterly useless, or because if they actually worked they'd be so detrimental to reasoned democracy.

Brazil's Record-Beating Year: Bloggers Attacked, Broadcasters Killed

Thomas Hughes | Posted 03.05.2016 | UK
Thomas Hughes

In many ways, Brazil is at a crucial crossroads: the shocking increase in attacks must provide the impetus to improve investigations and protection of communicators at all levels of Brazilian political, social, and economic life.

Film and Visual Arts Reaching New Heights in Vietnam - Monitoring the Implementation of the 2005 Convention

Salma Zulfiqar | Posted 27.04.2016 | UK
Salma Zulfiqar

Reaching out to youth and raising their awareness on UNESCO's 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions...

Was a UN Human Rights Expert's Criticisms of the UK Just 'Meddling'?

Allan Hogarth | Posted 25.04.2016 | UK Politics
Allan Hogarth

There are many more examples that demonstrate that we live in a world where the actions of our Government can be used to justify the erosion of rights and the crushing of criticism and dissent. The UK mustn't indulge in further episodes of bad-example setting. Here it should take on board Mr Kiai's findings and aim to find solutions that navigate between the security of the state and its citizens, whilst enshrining and protect their freedoms of association and assembly.

Europe: A Bastion of Moderate and Temperate Speech? No Thanks

Thomas Hughes | Posted 18.04.2016 | UK Politics
Thomas Hughes

For Jan Böhmermann the German comedian at the centre of the current row, it's more than tricky. He faces three years imprisonment for insulting a Head of State, under paragraph 103 of the German Criminal Code.

Celebrating Senegal's Creativity with Renewed Commitment to the 2005 Convention

Salma Zulfiqar | Posted 12.04.2016 | UK
Salma Zulfiqar

For Senegalese hip hop artist, Moona Yanni, the world of creativity and music in particular, is a vehicle which allows artists to express themselves a...

Dreadlocks, North Korea, and the Zenith of Identity Politics

David Browne | Posted 07.04.2016 | UK Universities & Education
David Browne

Last week in the United States, the spectre of identity politics reared its ugly head once more, as a white student at San Francisco State University ...

Building on Indonesia's Cultural Policy with the 2005 Convention

Salma Zulfiqar | Posted 05.04.2016 | UK
Salma Zulfiqar

"The diversity of cultural expressions not only shows the identity of a nation, but also allows creative people to contribute towards their country by...

The Case of Felix Ngole - Why Your Politics Should not Jeopardise Your Career

Alan Grant | Posted 01.03.2016 | UK Politics
Alan Grant

It is often forgotten in modern history classes that England is the birthplace of our modern conception of liberty. It is from the green and fertile n...

An Open Response to the Authors of the Mannan Family ISIS Statement

Michael Mumisa | Posted 07.07.2016 | UK
Michael Mumisa

To the authors of the statement, On 3 July, 2015, you released a statement confirming that you had joined the so-called Islamic State (ISIS) which yo...

'Draw the Line Here' Mocks the Men in Masks

Robert Sharp | Posted 07.07.2016 | UK Politics
Robert Sharp

Perhaps the most pleasing aspect to this book, therefore, is that the contributors have used their own freedom of expression to defend the free speech rights of others. It is a positive and creative response to a moment of destruction, and should give us cause for hope.

Hacktivism to Balaclava Punk: Protest Must Be Protected in All Its Forms

Thomas Hughes | Posted 19.06.2016 | UK
Thomas Hughes

Protest is increasingly going digital. Whether it is using the internet to organise and report physical acts of protest, using online space as a platform on which to take action, or targeting online infrastructure itself: across the world, people are taking their right to protest online.

No, Ambassador: It's Not 'Meddling' to Call for Free Speech in Saudi Arabia

Robert Sharp | Posted 17.06.2016 | UK
Robert Sharp

As the Badawi case has shown, dissent in Saudi Arabia, as in many countries in the Middle East, is brutally suppressed. Yet Saudi Arabia is in fact a signatory to the Arab Charter on Human Rights in 2009, a document that guarantees the right to freedom of expression. Campaigners are asking Saudi Arabia to adhere to the standards it has set for itself.

If Debate Is Silenced We Risk More Violence in the Name of Religion

Thomas Hughes | Posted 23.05.2015 | UK
Thomas Hughes

States must do more than simply say the right things at the UN; agreeing to Resolution 16/18 is one thing, but the test will be whether it is followed up with action to protect freedom of expression and freedom of religion or belief for all people.

Azerbaijan, the Russian Linesman and Other Dodgy Sporting Decisions

Naomi Westland | Posted 23.05.2015 | UK
Naomi Westland

The glitz and glamour of a major sports event are all very well, but not when they are used as an attempt to launder a tarnished image to the world. Amnesty is calling for all Azerbaijan's prisoners of conscience to be released immediately and unconditionally.

Satire in 2015: Any Room for Outsiders?

Katy Gregory | Posted 06.05.2015 | UK Universities & Education
Katy Gregory

Freedom of speech, that most elusive subject. Lately it has been a very contentious topic. The murders of Charlie Hebdo journalists, as well as other...

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.

Is Everyone an Artist?

Elena Barbiero | Posted 15.04.2015 | UK Lifestyle
Elena Barbiero

The mere act of creating, designing and putting something on paper is incredibly complex. You touch emotions, you practice fine motor skills, planning, imagination. Some amatuer artists produce incredibly accomplished pieces, but that's not the point really. Scribbles can and do have the same dignity and importance.

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.

Should Freedom of Expression Have Limits?

Farooq Aftab | Posted 20.03.2015 | UK
Farooq Aftab

In light of the recent attacks on Charlie Hebdo, the debate on freedom of expression has once again come to the fore. It is claimed that Muslims are being overly sensitive and overreacting when it comes to the reprinting of the cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)...

Why Aren't UK Ministers Manning the Free Speech Barricades for Raif Badawi?

Kate Allen | Posted 21.03.2015 | UK Politics
Kate Allen

So take that Riyadh: we're going to continue having a close dialogue with you. Messrs Cameron and Ellwood have only spoken on Badawi's plight when asked. There have been no big ministerial statements, no press releases, no primetime media interviews, and no carpeting for the Saudi Arabian ambassador to the UK, Mohammed bin Nawwaf bin Abdulaziz Al Saud. Once again, it seems that ministers are content to wear the Saudi muzzle... As the UK government knows full well (not least because Amnesty International regularly tells it so), Saudi Arabia's human rights record is a roll-call of shame.

Charlie Hebdo: The Rallying Cry for Free Speech Is Noble, but Hypocritical

Alexandra Chaloux | Posted 11.03.2015 | UK
Alexandra Chaloux

I would invite those who are invoking the sanctity of free speech and freedom of self expression in response to the shootings in Paris to consider a few things...

I Am Not Brave Enough to 'Be Charlie'... And Neither Are You

Robert Sharp | Posted 16.03.2015 | UK Politics
Robert Sharp

#JeNeSuisPasCharlie. And - I'll bet - neither are you. But there are plenty of people out there who do exhibit the same bizarre tenacity. These atypicals may found in every culture and country - freedom of speech is not a value unique to France or the liberal western tradition.