Freedom of expression

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Freedom of expression

Post  von K. on Thu Mar 24, 2011 7:44 pm

European Court of Human Rights (case Grigoriades v. Greece from 1997):

The Court has stated the applicable principles as follows in its judgment in the case of Vogt v. Germany: "(i) Freedom of expression constitutes one of the essential foundations of a democratic society and one of the basic conditions for its progress and each individual's self-fulfilment. Subject to paragraph 2 of Article 10, it is applicable not only to 'information' or 'ideas' that are favourably received or regarded as inoffensive or as a matter of indifference, but also to those that offend, shock or disturb; such are the demands of that pluralism, tolerance and broadmindedness without which there is no 'democratic society'. Freedom of expression, as enshrined in Article 10, is subject to a number of exceptions which, however, must be narrowly interpreted and the necessity for any restrictions must be convincingly established. (ii) The adjective 'necessary', within the meaning of Article 10 § 2, implies the existence of a 'pressing social need'.

Taken from here:

http://sim.law.uu.nl/SIM/CaseLaw/hof.nsf/e4ca7ef017f8c045c1256849004787f5/d2870a8f2d6b2277c1256640004c367e?OpenDocument

Maybe some democratic people ought to read this, or ask their lawyer about these things...

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Re: Freedom of expression

Post  Janus_Gersie on Tue Mar 29, 2011 12:14 pm

Wow, interesting source. Will look for a good german translation in order to understand the whole phrasing properly.
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Re: Freedom of expression

Post  kechris on Tue Mar 29, 2011 3:31 pm

I think that Voltaire said it better.
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Re: Freedom of expression

Post  Thossa on Tue Mar 29, 2011 5:07 pm

kechris wrote:I think that Voltaire said it better.

What I like Voltaire said is:
"Six hours per day for work is enough. The rest says: live."
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Re: Freedom of expression

Post  von K. on Tue Mar 29, 2011 5:26 pm

Janus_Gersie wrote:Wow, interesting source. Will look for a good german translation in order to understand the whole phrasing properly.

You should find the case Vogt v. Germany which was also mentioned in this case. I'm not sure how similar it was overall, but the freedom of expression part was the same, I think.

It's a difficult matter, where to draw the line, but the view of a European Court should surely be a guiding light for a FISTF forum. There has been absolutely nothing in SN that would give reason for such drastic sensorship and bans.

kechris wrote:I think that Voltaire said it better.

“I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

You are right, of course. But as court's are used in everyday discussion in FISTF at the moment, it's good also to refer to a verdict. For normal people Voltaire is naturally enough.

Nice quote, Thossa! That's in fact even more than the hunter gatherer tribes, like the pygmies, work even today.

I've also read about a study which says that 6 hours work day is usually as effective as an 8 hour day. Because 8 hours exceeds the limit of working effectively. Of course depends a little on the work in question.

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Re: Freedom of expression

Post  Lorenzo on Thu Mar 31, 2011 4:48 pm

von K. wrote:European Court of Human Rights (case Grigoriades v. Greece from 1997):

The Court has stated the applicable principles as follows in its judgment in the case of Vogt v. Germany: "(i) Freedom of expression constitutes one of the essential foundations of a democratic society and one of the basic conditions for its progress and each individual's self-fulfilment. Subject to paragraph 2 of Article 10, it is applicable not only to 'information' or 'ideas' that are favourably received or regarded as inoffensive or as a matter of indifference, but also to those that offend, shock or disturb; such are the demands of that pluralism, tolerance and broadmindedness without which there is no 'democratic society'. Freedom of expression, as enshrined in Article 10, is subject to a number of exceptions which, however, must be narrowly interpreted and the necessity for any restrictions must be convincingly established. (ii) The adjective 'necessary', within the meaning of Article 10 § 2, implies the existence of a 'pressing social need'.

Well then, if that is so, it follows that the European Union acknowledges very little freedom of expression.

There has been no repressive, tyrannical regime in world history that did not avow a pressing social and political need to persecute the beliefs contrary to its own ideology. On this basis the incarceration of Galileo Galilei is perfectly commendable: the theory that the earth rotated around the sun blatantly contradicted the holy scriptures, which had been the basis of European social order for over thousand years. As soon as the principle of free interpretation of the scriptures gained acceptance, Europe would be plunged in a century of bloody confessional wars. The church had every right to advocate a “pressing social need” to keep heretics and scentists under lock and key.

The ultimate meaning of the Court’s formulation simply is that EU states reserve themselves the right to outlaw any opinion they are uncomfortable with.
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Re: Freedom of expression

Post  von K. on Thu Mar 31, 2011 6:47 pm

So Lorenzo, you think that the whole wording of the sentence, makes no difference, and as it can be disregarded in extreme cases, it means it is worthless for example regarding forums?

If you do, I'm surprised.

As you can see, and also can see from the german example, governments have tried to implement that clause, but have failed to convincingly establish the necessity of restrictions.

Lorenzo wrote:On this basis the incarceration of Galileo Galilei is perfectly commendable: the theory that the earth rotated around the sun blatantly contradicted the holy scriptures, which had been the basis of European social order for over thousand years. As soon as the principle of free interpretation of the scriptures gained acceptance, Europe would be plunged in a century of bloody confessional wars. The church had every right to advocate a “pressing social need” to keep heretics and scentists under lock and key.

Would the church convincingly establish the necessity of such actions? Wasn't the church's part of social development part of the reason for these wars? They were just proved wrong. It's the same as today we would legally condemn people who bring to our attention all the various catastrophies that we are developing on this planet. Just because we are uncomfortable with those, and just because the information can lead to civil unrest because of misleading information from governments.

Times also change. In the days of Galilei, the analytical thinking was used even less than today. Most scholars also used irrational thinking based on first hand experience instead of scientific proof. The easy example is the heliocentic idea of Copernicus, which was disregarded, because "we can all see with our own eyes that you are wrong".

So, in those days, condemning Galilei was, alas, the right way to do things. Today the society has developed in Europe so, that this would be unacceptable. Every era has to use its best information, but it has to be accepted by more than a few individuals. In Galilei's era his information was not yet accepted as the best information, because almost no one else accepted it as the best information. Nowadays freedom of expression is accepted as the best alternative in democratic societies like the EU.

Lorenzo wrote:The ultimate meaning of the Court’s formulation simply is that EU states reserve themselves the right to outlaw any opinion they are uncomfortable with.

As already stated above and in the ruling, there has to be a convincing reason. As you can read from the rulings EU states can't do what they like.

So, what is the convincingly established reason and the pressing social need, that allows unequal rules for bans in the SN forum, and which also gives certain people the right to insult (in its real meaning) others, while others are blamed for insults (which are not insults in their real meaning)?

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Re: Freedom of expression

Post  attardsubbuteo on Fri Apr 01, 2011 4:27 pm

Be careful, the European Court of Human Rights has nothing to do with the EU, it is an independent institution pertaining under the Council of Europe, which is constituted also of non-EU members. The European Court of Human Rights is a final court of appeal after all legal procedure at the national level has been exhausted. I doubt the ECOHR will do anything about forum bans .. even if it will, the funds involved in such legal actions would be immense..

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Re: Freedom of expression

Post  von K. on Fri Apr 01, 2011 11:18 pm

attardsubbuteo wrote:Be careful, the European Court of Human Rights has nothing to do with the EU, it is an independent institution pertaining under the Council of Europe, which is constituted also of non-EU members. The European Court of Human Rights is a final court of appeal after all legal procedure at the national level has been exhausted. I doubt the ECOHR will do anything about forum bans .. even if it will, the funds involved in such legal actions would be immense..

True. I used the term EU just to easily mean at least part of the modern democratic Europe. But I should have written more precisely.

I wouldn't use courts of any level for such minimal matters. They have much more important things to focus on, even the lowest level courts. It is just a good reference to show what is considered, by law, as insulting and as valuable for democracy. The point is that SN forum would do well to read such rulings before they accuse and ban people without good reason, and then pronounce themselves as democratic.

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Re: Freedom of expression

Post  Lorenzo on Wed Apr 06, 2011 12:55 am

von K. wrote:So Lorenzo, you think that the whole wording of the sentence, makes no difference, and as it can be disregarded in extreme cases, it means it is worthless for example regarding forums?

If you do, I'm surprised.

I didn’t say that it makes no difference. I said that it makes very little difference, and that is, and remains, my belief.

I could embark on a long exposition, but frankly, I feel that political arguments are best left out from tablesoccer discussions.
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