New Legal Scholarship by Will Creeley and Greg Lukianoff in ‘The Charleston Law Review’

August 9, 2011

FIRE is pleased to announce the publication of "New Media, Old Principles: Digital Communication and Free Speech on Campus," an article co-written by FIRE’s Director of Legal and Public Advocacy Will Creeley and President Greg Lukianoff, in The Charleston Law Review. In the article, Creeley and Lukianoff examine how online student speech has fared during the precipitous rise of social media and digital communication. Detailing numerous cases in which students have been punished for online speech, they argue that although vehicles for communication may have changed, the legal principles underlying First Amendment doctrine must not. As Greg and Will point out:

The First Amendment has weathered technological revolutions before, and it will do so again. For the most part, the legal tests we employ to ascertain whether speech enjoys First Amendment protection do not rely on the medium in which the expression occurs. The exacting definition of peer-on-peer harassment remains the same, whether the speech takes place online or on the campus green; the legal test for incitement still requires the satisfaction of the same elements, whether the expression at issue is visible on a screen or heard on the way to class. While the media may be new, the speech—and how we evaluate it—is not.

Read the entire article here.