109

You need to keep in mind that the press freedom ratings is not a measure of freedom of speech, but freedom of the press, and the US is still ranked as "fairly good". Specifically, the index describes itself: What does it measure? The Index ranks 180 countries and regions according to the level of freedom available to journalists. It is a snapshot of ...


78

This is a common misconception. Freedom of speech does not mean that everybody can say whatever they want, whenever they want and wherever they want. It means essentially that people cannot be legally punished for expressing their opinions, except if said opinions infringe on other freedoms. This means that people are allowed to express their opinions, but ...


71

tim's answer already covers the Press Freedom Index methodology. I'd like to add that for the United States the significant component of the result is the abuses score of 37.40. This is a fairly large number: the second highest among the top 50, after Denmark (which has a score of 45, apparently, due to the murder of Kim Wall in 2017). US Press Freedom ...


63

Of course no other country protects freedom of speech "as the United States do." They have their own rules which are not quite the same. Some give equivalent protections, some do not. There is a tendency to see the restrictions on freedom of speech (or other freedoms) which apply in your country as just common sense and as properly safeguarded by courts. ...


47

This topic is examined at quite some length in Ontario Law Reform Commission, Report on Political Activity, Public Comment and Disclosure by Crown Employees (1986) (cited by Mcmanus v Scott-Charlton which was cited in the judgement of the original case in question, which is how I ended up on it; I mention this lest one think that a Canadian document might ...


39

1) They would be absolutely allowed to promote any political agenda as a publisher, but not necessarily as a platform. It's contentious whether famous Section 230 allows them to find a perfect sweet spot: shielded from any liability for content posted by crazy users as if they were merely a platform; having huge editorial discretion in selecting what to ...


36

ECHR Article 10 applies almost everywhere in Europe: Article 10 – Freedom of expression Everyone has the right to freedom of expression. This right shall include freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers. This article shall not prevent States from ...


35

The core concept here is procedural fairness—or rather, the appearance of procedural fairness. Procedural fairness involves whether impartial and open procedures are used when decisions affecting the well being of others are made. Is the decision-maker impartial? Is the game rigged? Procedural fairness is crucial for the health of a democracy ...


31

Are there really no countries that protect Freedom of Speech as the United States do? The question is poorly framed. I interpreted it such that you imply that the US is at the top of some "Freedom of Speech" measurement. However, nothing comes even close to a universally accepted "Freedom of Speech" index which could provide us with a preorder. The one ...


23

Sedition, the technical legal term for what you're talking about, is prohibited by section 124A of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). This dates all the way back to the colonial era, and was originally used to suppress people pushing for India's independence from Britain. The Supreme Court of India ruled in 1962 that section 124A was constitutional, but that ...


22

Consider where your line of thought will lead: You own or have rented a house or apartment, I presume. Would it be censorship if you stop me from painting political slogans on your bedroom wall? Or would it simply be you exercising your right to determine how your bedroom is to be used? Say you invite a couple of friends for a party. Would it be censorship ...


21

The Wikipedia page of self-censorship just tell part of the story, there are other "invisible hand" such as corporate censorship. Media may reject story or even advertisement that "offend" their main advertisement buyers. A good example is consumer goods price hikes by the change of packaging, US media usually dare not to report it, or using the free ...


21

Assuming your question is to be interpreted as "show me examples", what happened more recently that's reasonably relevant to a scenario like you propose was Wukan, in which local anti-corruption and to a certain extent pro-[local]-democracy activists were eventually suppressed: During the 2011 protests, Zhuang helped barricade the coastal hamlet of 15,000 ...


20

Facebook can and does actively promote a political agenda. They even formed a Political Action Committee, FB PAC, through which they donate money to various politicians and PACs (and contrary to right-wing narrative, they have been known to give more money to GOP causes). They also sell advertising space on their website for political ads, though this is a ...


14

While I agree the issues listed by RSF are serious, I would not put too much stock in relative ranking large swaths of such indexes because they can be sensitive from year to year changes on fairly obscure issues. Compare the ranking on RSF's Freedom Index vs FH's Freedom of the Press United States #45 #33 France #33 #44 South Korea #43 #66 ...


13

In 1989, a large number of Chinese citizens did exactly this on Tiananmen Square. The reaction by the Chinese govenment was to declare martial law and order the army to attack the protesters with lethal force. The military complied and killed several hundred to several thousand protesters (estimations differ a lot depending on source). Now this was 30 ...


13

A look through Wikipedia's article on hate speech laws by country suggests that there is one other country that does not criminalize "hate speech": Japan. Japanese law covers threats and slander, but it "does not apply to hate speech against general groups of people". Japan became a member of the United Nations International Convention on the Elimination ...


13

or punished in any way for it. The USA may pride itself on freedom from federal limitations on speech, but this does not mean that individual states do not themselves have laws which limit this. Blasphemy laws are still on the books in some states, for example, although it is vanishingly unlikely that they would ever be used. More significantly though, ...


13

Apparently they enjoy pretty strong protection and this is of rather recent origin. After Hutchinson [v. Proxmire (1979)], a Member of Congress was entitled to immunity for statements made “in his seat,” i.e., on the floor or in committee proceedings, but was liable as other citizens for defamatory remarks in the press or elsewhere outside of the ...


13

The US was a bit opaque in their other reasoning, just vaguely speaking of "overly narrow scope and politicized nature" of the resolution. In 2014 however, when a similar resolution was proposed, the EU, which only abstained had a more direct explanation: The European Union’s member states have abstained en masse from a United Nations resolution against ...


12

Freedom of speech is a fundamental right of any person to express themselves. It is one of the human rights defined by the UN charter, and it is a right expressed in most democratic constitutions, separately. To take the latter first - governments that guarantee freedom of speech defines it as a right to not get arrested, fined, censored or otherwise ...


11

I'm not familiar with India, but in general, guaranteed freedoms are never absolute. This would be a recipe for anarchy. The enforcing authority (the government) has to limit every freedom at least a little, or else that freedom could then be used to infringe upon other freedoms. In the US, freedom of speech is pretty sacred and generally interpreted by the ...


11

This is one of these gray areas where technology has outpaced legislation. Technically speaking, Facebook today might be considered a 'publisher', and therefore free to pursue whatever political agenda they desire. The same can be said of Twitter, another major social media platform. However, unlike traditional publishers, Facebook and Twitter have become ...


10

Okay, this requires a lot to unpack, but I'm going to try here. For the purposes of this discussion, I'll use two "controversial" statements one that will be agreeable to most US society including Facebook ("I like Fireworks on the Fourth of July") and one which is not ("Nickleback is the greatest band ever"). These are meant to avoid actually really nasty ...


9

The declaration of human rights is not a legally binding document. The US laws regarding free speech are. The argument that our largest communication platforms suppressing opinions are or would not be violating the principles of free speech because they are controlled by private companies comes from people arguing from the definition of free speech as a ...


9

Facebook is not a government organization. It is a private company. As such, the first amendment does not restrict its right to free speech, it protects it. As a private company, they can decide what speech is and is not allowed on their platform. If the government would try to restrict the way Facebook moderates and distributes their content, then it would ...


9

Governments Crave Self-Preservation The degree may vary, but all sufficiently large organisations eventually start gaining traits that promote its preservation. Some see it as a government's duty to ensure it doesn't get toppled easily, others will point out that governments without such measures are likely to, in the long run, be toppled more often, ...


8

There are multiple issues going on. The big one is, that you can have rights, but how they are implemented and enforced in practice - the unspoken aspects of it - really are crucial in determining what your real situation is, and your safety or potential risks in exercising those rights. For example - in some countries you have free speech and freedom - ...


8

Germany considers the PKK to be a terrorist organization. This goes back to some violence in 1993. At the same time, some Kurdish activists are organized in the "Democratic Kurdish Civic Center Germany," which is officially not part of the PKK. Their rallies must not show PKK insignia, since the PKK is banned as terrorists, or their activists may be ...


7

In a democracy, you are allowed to advocate a complete overthrow of the existing government, via voting. While it is commonplace today, the peaceful transfer of power from one government to the next is just that - an existing government stepping down and allowing itself to be overthrown. What you can't do is advocate violence, whether to overthrow a ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible