Free speech & the law: “Hate Speech” & Non-Discrimination

Although there is no single “hate speech law” in the UK, nor any agreed international definition of the term, a number of laws forbid hatred or discrimination against individuals or groups, which can include things people say, based on colour, race, ethnicity and nationality, religion, and sexual orientation.

Free speech & the law: Child Protection

Child protection is a sensitive area of law and a deserved focus of public concern. As there is no clear legal definition of the concept of indecency, and because of the sensitivity of the matter, decisions made by the police and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) can be subjective and inconsistent, and in the wrong context can seriously compromise freedom of expression rights.

Free speech & the law: Obscene Publications

It is nearly 300 years since bookseller Edmund Curll was convicted in 1727 on a charge of obscenity in an English court for his publication of the mildly pornographic Venus in the Cloister or The Nun in Her Smock. Obscenity was thereafter recognised as a crime under common law.

Free speech & the law: Public Order

Under the Human Rights Act 1998, police officers must respect people’s right to freedom of expression guaranteed by Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). However, Article 10 of the convention states that restrictions on people’s free expression rights may be justified on the grounds of preventing disorder or crime, protecting public safety and protecting the rights of others

Free speech & the law: Counter Terrorism

Counter-terrorism laws seek to address the application of "violence for political ends". It is the "political ends" element that makes these laws interact so frequently with free expression rights, as the law tries to clamp down on expressions of sympathy with terrorist organisations and ideologies, as well as any resulting violence.

Index on Censorship CEO Jodie Ginsberg to step down in 2020

Jodie Ginsberg to join Internews Europe as CEO Index on Censorship chief executive Jodie Ginsberg will step down in early 2020 after five and a half years in the role, Index said on Wednesday. The board, chaired by Trevor Phillips since 2018, will launch the search...

Index calls the re-arrest of novelist Ahmet Altan “arbitrary and cruel”

Turkish authorities re-arrested the internationally known Turkish novelist Ahmet Altan just one week after his release from more than three years in detention. Index on Censorship and 24 other NGOs say that his re-arrest, on 12 November, was an extraordinarily low...

Free speech and human rights organisations call for Turkish novelist Ahmet Altan, Nazlı Ilıcak and other journalists to be released

Ahead of the second hearing in the retrial of Turkish novelist Ahmet Altan, Nazlı Ilıcak and four other journalists and media workers, free speech organisations call for all detained defendants to be released and for the charges to be dropped

Call to end impunity for those involved in journalists’ murders

Index and partner organisations are calling on governments to end impunity for crimes against journalists


Ruth Anderson

CEO at Index on Censorship

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Why critics like Jay Rayner have a role in battling self-censorship

by | Apr 12, 2024 | Israel,News and features,Opinion,Palestine,Ruth's blog,United Kingdom | 0 Comments

Our CEO ponders the challenges of being a reviewer after reading the latest column from the Observer’s restaurant writer

Reflections six months on from 7 October

by | Apr 5, 2024 | Israel,News and features,Opinion,Palestine,Ruth's blog | 0 Comments

Our CEO says that we must address the root causes of a conflict that has led to the deaths of more than 31,000 people

When is a landslide not a landslide?

by | Mar 22, 2024 | News and features,North Korea,Opinion,Romania,Russia,Ruth's blog,Rwanda | 0 Comments

It’s a question which Vladimir Putin has clearly been thinking about after what would ordinarily be considered a decisive win in last week’s Russian presidential election

Why withdrawal of labour is the ultimate expression of freedom

by | Mar 15, 2024 | News and features,Opinion,Ruth's blog,United Kingdom | 0 Comments

Forty years on from the miners’ strike, our CEO says we are duty-bound to uphold and defend the right to express dissent

Remembering the women who pay the ultimate price for freedom

by | Mar 8, 2024 | Colombia,Iran,Lebanon,Mexico,News and features,Opinion,Ruth's blog,Sudan,Sudan,Syria | 0 Comments

On International Women’s Day, our CEO Ruth Anderson reflects on another deadly 12 months for female dissidents

Mexico: Obrador’s attacks on freedom reach new heights

by | Mar 1, 2024 | Mexico,News and features,Opinion,Ruth's blog | 0 Comments

The Mexican president is attacking independent institutions and publicly shared a critical journalist’s telephone number