West Virginia University

Location: Morgantown, West Virginia
Website: http://www.wvu.edu
Type: Public
Federal Circuit: 4th Circuit

Tell West Virginia University to revise its speech policies by filling out this form.

Speech Code Rating

West Virginia University has been given the speech code rating Yellow. Yellow light colleges and universities are those institutions with at least one ambiguous policy that too easily encourages administrative abuse and arbitrary application. Read more here.

  • West Virginia University: Limit on Speech to Campus “Free Speech Zones”

    February 11, 2002

    West Virginia University (WVU) has abandoned a notorious and chilling policy that quarantined free expression to two small areas of campus. FIRE first learned of WVU’s censorship zones from two WVU students, Michael Bomford and Matthew Poe, in November 2001. The students, who founded the West Virginia University Free Speech Consortium, have publicly criticized the policy since late 2000, when campus police first prohibited the distribution of protest literature. The campus police cited WVU’s policy, which identified only "two designated areas for free speech and assembly"- outlawing these rights on ninety-nine percent of the campus. FIRE wrote WVU President David […]

    » Read More
Yellow Light Policies
  • Electronic Mail Policy

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: July 11, 2018

    University electronic mail services may not be used for: … advancement of political agenda.

    » Read More

  • Division of Student Life: Mountaineer Creed

    Speech Code Category: Policies Restricting Freedom of Conscience
    Last updated: July 11, 2018

    As a Mountaineer, I Will:

    * practice academic and personal integrity
    * value wisdom and culture
    * foster lifetime learning
    * practice civic responsibility and good stewardship
    * respect human dignity and cultural diversity

    In order to become a meaningful member of West Virginia University and the society in which I live, I dedicate my energy, my talents, and my intellect to these standards of excellence.

    » Read More

  • Division of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: Vision and Values

    Speech Code Category: Policies on Tolerance, Respect, and Civility
    Last updated: July 11, 2018

    West Virginia University will be known for honoring the worth of every individual and sustaining an environment where all people are encouraged to achieve their full potential. This vision encompasses the following:

    * Students will be prepared with the principles of social justice competencies in order to function effectively in the global workplace;
    * Faculty and staff will exemplify principles of social justice in fulfilling their responsibilities;

    * Complaints of illegal discrimination, harassment, and abuses of social justice principles will be addressed in an objective and timely manner …

    » Read More

  • Student Conduct Code and Discipline Procedure: “Prohibited computer or electronic activity”

    Speech Code Category: Internet Usage Policies
    Last updated: July 11, 2018

    “Prohibited computer or electronic activity” means … use of a computer or other electronic device to send obscene or abusive messages.

    » Read More

Green Light Policies
  • WVU Board of Governors Policy 11: Freedom of Expression and Use of Facilities Policy

    Speech Code Category: Advertised Commitments to Free Expression
    Last updated: July 11, 2018

    [T]he West Virginia University Board of Governors recognizes the right of individuals to pursue their constitutional right of free speech and assembly, and welcomes open dialogue as an opportunity to expand the educational opportunities of our campus communities.

    » Read More

  • WVU Board of Governors Policy 11: Freedom of Expression and Use of Facilities Policy

    Speech Code Category: Protest and Demonstration Policies
    Last updated: July 11, 2018

    Written or printed materials may be distributed on the grounds outside of campus buildings.

    Assemblies of persons may occur on any grounds on the campus outside of buildings. Outdoor assembly areas, as designated by each campus, may be reserved in advance for assemblies of persons with more than 50 participants*. Students, faculty, staff and campus recognized organizations and departments that wish to assemble inside campus buildings must obtain a reservation in accordance with campus facility reservation procedures.

    The outdoor assembly areas are open to the public and do not require advance reservation for use between 7:30 a.m. and 10 p.m. However, advance reservation is strongly encouraged in order to ensure that a location is available at a specific date and time.

    » Read More

  • WVU Board of Governors Policy 44: Policy Regarding Sexual Misconduct

    Speech Code Category: Harassment Policies
    Last updated: July 11, 2018

    3.3.1 “Harassment” is conduct that creates a Hostile Environment, as defined below, and is based upon an individual’s race, color, national origin, ancestry, age, physical or mental disability, marital or family status, pregnancy, veteran status, service in the uniformed services (as defined in state and federal law), religion, creed, sex, sexual orientation, genetic information, gender identity, or gender expression.

    3.3.2 Harassment may take various forms, including, but not limited to, name-calling, graphic or written statements (including the use of social media, text messages, email, or other similar forms), or other conduct that may be physically threatening, harmful, or humiliating.

    3.4.3 “Sexual Harassment (Hostile Environment)” means Harassment that creates a Hostile Environment based on sex, which includes, but is not limited to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature.

    3.4.4 Sexual Harassment may occur between people of the same sex or people of different sexes. Examples of Sexual Harassment may include, but are not limited to, unsolicited, deliberate, or repeated touching, sexual flirtation, advances or propositions which are not welcomed and/or desired; unwelcome jokes, stories, comments, innuendos, or other sexually oriented statements which are specifically designed to embarrass or humiliate through their sexual subject matter content; unwelcome sexual communication such as graphic or degrading comments about one’s gender related to personal appearance; unwelcome display of sexually explicit materials, objects, or pictures in an individual’s place of work or study, such as viewing material on computers or other electronic devices where others can see. Importantly, these and any other examples in this Rule, are provided only for illustration purposes and all conduct must still meet the applicable definitions in the Rule before rising to the level of prohibited conduct.

    3.5.1 “Hostile Environment” means a situation where an individual is subjected to any conduct based on the reasons set forth in Sections 3.3 or 3.4 and that conduct is sufficiently severe or pervasive, or so objectively offensive, so as to unreasonably interfere with an individual’s educational experience, work or academic performance or deny or limit the individual’s ability to participate in or benefit from the University’s programs, services, opportunities, or activities.

    » Read More

  • Oh My God: Is Calling Someone By The Wrong Pronoun A Title IX Violation At WVU?

    August 23, 2016

    By Matt Vespa at Townhall Princeton University is banning the word “man” from their vocabulary on campus. At West Virginia University, is calling someone by the wrong pronoun a Title IX violation worthy of an investigation? Campus Reform noted that while the website makes it appear that the consequences would be as such; the administration said it’s all a mischaracterization. If so, they better clarify that on their website before the social justice warriors start ratting out students who might have called someone a person, or something (via Emily Larsen):… Read more here.

    » Read More
  • Senators Seek Law to Boost College Sexual Assault Reporting

    April 26, 2016

    By Andrea Billups at AMI Newswire A bipartisan group of lawmakers on Tuesday called for a new law governing how colleges and universities report and handle campus sexual assault claims and hearings… Read more here.

    » Read More
  • Education quality more important than marketing

    May 18, 2007

    When faculty and the Board of Governors sparred recently over the appointment of Morgantown lawyer Mike Garrison as president of West Virginia University, many saw it as a fight for the guiding principles of the school. At stake is whether WVU will act as a corporation or an educational institution. During David Hardesty’s 12-year reign, WVU operated as a corporation, overly concerned with marketing, brand management and increasing cash flow. Many, including the faculty, argue the school has lost sight of its founding principles to serve the educational needs of West Virginians. As a WVU alumna who has experienced Hardesty’s […]

    » Read More
  • Foundation claims WVU violates students’ speech rights

    February 23, 2007

    West Virginia University is violating students’ First Amendment rights, according to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE). The “red light” ranking by FIRE means that the rights of students protected by the First Amendment are being violated on campus. The survey was done on over 334 institutions across the country and an overwhelming 229 colleges and universities were red-lighted, including WVU. An additional 91 were yellow-lighted, meaning they had minor infractions, and only eight institutions were green-lighted, meaning they did not violate students’ First Amendment rights. The survey was conducted after FIRE learned about Michigan State University’s policy […]

    » Read More
  • FIRE Applauds University of Nevada-Reno’s Dropping of ‘Speech Zones’

    July 5, 2006

    by Jim Brown Agape Press The University of Nevada at Reno (UNR) has eliminated so-called “speech zones” that limited student expression on campus. The university’s previous policy had designated only four small or remote areas on its grounds as “public forum” spaces while explicitly deeming the rest of the campus a non-public forum. The new policy adopted by the university, however, allows students to use the entire campus — except for the interior of buildings — to demonstrate, protest, or pass out flyers and newspapers. Student activists working with the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada and the Foundation for […]

    » Read More
  • UNCG in free speech battle

    December 17, 2005

    Two UNC-Greensboro students face discipline for protesting outside the university’s designated “free speech and assembly areas,” based on a policy that a national civil liberties organization calls unconstitutional. The students, Allison Jaynes and Robert Sinnott, were charged with a “violation of respect” under the student code of conduct at UNC-Greensboro after a Nov. 16 protest attended by about 40 people. The two students face disciplinary action that could range from a warning to a probation with restrictions. The demonstration outside the library by UNCG College Libertarians was aimed specifically at the university’s policy governing the location of protests on campus. […]

    » Read More
  • Students to protest UNCG’s free speech zones

    November 15, 2005

    The two places UNCG has designated free-speech zones do not meet the approval of some student political groups who also object to notifying administrators 48 hours in advance to use the small, overgrown areas. A coalition of activist organizations, from the College Libertarians to the campus International Socialist Organization, plans to protest the school’s policy Wednesday. The College Democrats and Republicans have also joined the cause, which was spearheaded by the Libertarians. Organizers said leaders of the Guilford County Democratic, Republican and Libertarian parties might speak at the event. School policy dictates that protests and student group gatherings occur in […]

    » Read More
  • Trumping Moses and Matthew

    November 7, 2005

    By Suzanne Fields at Townhall.com What do the Bible and the “The Vagina Monologues” have in common? Not much. But surely we can all agree that both are covered by the First Amendment, guaranteeing freedom of religion and freedom of expression. Well, that’s not so at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. At UWEC you can live in a dorm and watch a performance of “The Vagina Monologues,” but you can’t join a Bible studies group. Any resident assistant, or RA, as the live-in student counselors are called, can put on a performance of the play, and one has, but leading […]

    » Read More
  • WVU labeled ‘red light’ school over free speech

    September 24, 2005

    MORGANTOWN – Under pressure from a lawsuit and student/faculty protests, West Virginia University abandoned a “free speech zone” policy that limited public debate to certain areas on campus in 2002. But nearly three years later, the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) calls the school a “red light” university when it comes to free speech. So why is FIRE putting its brakes on when it comes to WVU? “There are two primary ways in which speech codes violate the First Amendment: One, by being over broad and two, by being vague,” Samantha Harris, a program officer at FIRE said. […]

    » Read More
  • Consulting All Sides on “Speech Codes”

    May 1, 2005

    By David T. Beito, Ralph E. Luker, and Robert David Johnson, Organization of American Historians Newsletter Few controversies have polarized higher education more than that of Ward Churchill at the University of Colorado (CU). Many conservatives, including Governor Bill Owens of Colorado and Newt Gingrich, have demanded that Churchill be dismissed for characterizing the victims of 9/11 as “Little Eichmanns.” Professors and students at CU and elsewhere have responded with rallies and petitions to defend Churchill’s academic freedom. They emphasize that the health of the academy rests on the toleration of controversial, even repellant, ideas. Joining in, the faculty of […]

    » Read More
  • A space for speech

    April 28, 2003

    By Sarah Muench, Web Devil (Arizona State University)

    » Read More
  • Issues of free speech confronted at colleges

    April 17, 2003

    The Water Buffalo incident may be 10 years in the past, but the future of free speech remains hazy at colleges and universities from coast to coast. Penn’s own speech code was called into question in the spring of 1993, when then-College freshman Eden Jacobowitz was charged with racial harassment for shouting, “Shut up, you water buffalo,” at 15 black sorority sisters dancing under his high rise window in the wee hours of the morning. The right not to be offended and the right to freedom of expression apparently continue to do battle in almost every state in the union. […]

    » Read More
  • ACLU Sues U. Maryland Over So-Called ‘Free-Speech’ Zones

    December 19, 2002

    By Sarah Lesher at University Wire

    » Read More
  • West Virginia U. Abolishes Campus Free Speech Zones

    December 9, 2002

    By Debrah Bonn at The Daily Texan Students at West Virginia University can now picket, demonstrate or hand out fliers wherever they please, a freedom not allowed prior to Nov. 8. After two years packed with debate and protest, the university scrapped its old free-speech policy in favor of one that allows students more choices on where they can express their opinions. The previous policy, put into place during the Vietnam era, said Bill Nevin, external communications manager for the university, allowed just two “free speech zones” on campus where groups could assemble. Under the new policy, the entire university campus is […]

    » Read More
  • WVU Ends ‘Free-Speech Zones’

    November 17, 2002

    By Bill Steigerwald at Pittsburgh Sunday Tribune-Review Students at West Virginia University are now free to practice First Amendment rights on their entire campus. Until nine days ago, WVU’s 22,000 undergrads — like students at hundreds of other colleges whose restrictive free-speech policies have raised the ire of civil libertarians — were able to practice their First Amendment rights only on about 5 percent of the campus. It took months of protests from students and faculty, plus legal pressure from civil libertarian watchdog groups such as the Rutherford Institute and the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) to liberate the […]

    » Read More
  • WVU Eases Campus-Speech Rules

    November 12, 2002

    By Ellen Sorokin at The Washington Times Protests and political discourse are no longer restricted at West Virginia University, where officials have abandoned a policy that limited public debate on campus to designated “free-speech zones.” WVU’s Board of Governors discarded the policy Friday after months of protests by students and faculty, and a lawsuit filed by civil libertarians who said the policy violated First Amendment rights. “Large groups under the policy are free to meet wherever they want to, and as long as people act in a responsible manner, I have no concerns whatsoever,” said Thomas Dorer, a WVU general counsel, in an […]

    » Read More
  • Lawsuits, debate intensify over university ‘free speech zones’

    October 1, 2002

    The battle over controversial “free speech zones” on public university campuses continues to gather momentum as the lawsuits against the widely used zones multiply across the nation.   Several universities from Florida to Texas have encountered legal trouble as student groups, joined by national rights advocation organizations, claim that limiting demonstration to specific zones infringes on First Amendment rights.   Free speech zones are carefully drawn out areas where students or groups can hold rallies. Depending on the campus, administration allows varying amounts of demonstration outside these areas.   The main argument behind the policy is that noisy protest can […]

    » Read More
  • Boxing-in the Bill of Rights

    September 30, 2002

    Fall 2002

    » Read More
  • WVU Students Mourn Death of Free Speech

    May 13, 2002

    By Vicki Smith at The Associated Press State & Local Wire Mourning the loss of free speech on campus, West Virginia University students dressed in black, marched to a somber drumbeat and laid a copy of the First Amendment to rest Monday in a newspaperwrapped coffin. About 18 students participated in the Free Speech Consortium protest, which came as the Faculty Senate endorsed a policy limiting student gatherings and demonstrations to seven “free expression areas.” “Like an endangered species, the habitat of free speech is shrinking,” senior Helena Triplett said during her eulogy. “It is not until we try to move that […]

    » Read More
  • WVU Students are at Greater Liberty to Protest

    May 12, 2002

    By Mary Kershaw at USA Today West Virginia University’s faculty senate is expected Monday to endorse revisions to the school’s policy on limiting student protests to designated “free speech zones.” The old policy restricted student demonstrations to two outdoor zones the size of small classrooms. Students demonstrated against the policy last winter, saying that they had a right to protest anywhere on campus. In February, 50 students gathered in front of the student union and marched through campus with an Abe Lincoln look-alike leading the way. “We needed to let the administration know that a lot of people felt the free speech […]

    » Read More
  • College students protest against so-called free speech zones at their campuses, saying that they violate their First Amendment rights

    April 26, 2002

    BOB EDWARDS, host:   Some student activists are finding a large portion of university campuses off-limits to protests. Schools with so-called free speech zones limit the outspoken to just a few places on campus. Administrators say the zones balance free speech and the need for order on campus. But some students at West Virginia University say the zones violate their First Amendment rights. Jeff Young of West Virginia Public Radio reports.   JEFF YOUNG reporting:   West Virginia University student activist Matthew Poe wanted to hand out flyers about corporations and human rights, but Poe instead got a lesson about […]

    » Read More
  • Groups Fight West Virginia U. Speech Policy

    April 18, 2002

    By Grant Smith at University Wire Two national civil liberties groups have joined a fight for a more liberal free speech policy at West Virginia University. Letters were sent to WVU President David Hardesty and other University officials from the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education and the Rutherford Institute, calling for a more liberal policy. Both groups reviewed the interim policy at the request of Students for Economic Justice. “The policy, as long as it doesn’t allow for demonstrators to direct their speech at the intended audience, is flatly unconstitutional,” Greg Lukianoff, FIRE Director of Legal and Public Advocacy said. […]

    » Read More
  • WVU Free Speech Policy Called Better But Not Perfect

    April 15, 2002

    The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — A civil rights group says West Virginia University’s new free speech policy is an improvement but still far from ideal. The interim policy expands an earlier one that gave students just two small areas on campus in which to gather for protests and demonstrations. Students now have seven “free expression areas” but they must make reservations at least 24 hours in advance for activities scheduled outside normal business hours “and/or that are anticipated to attract over 50 attendants,” the policy says. The policy “substantially improves the environment for discourse at WVU,” said Greg Lukianoff, […]

    » Read More
  • In the Zone

    March 25, 2002

    » Read More
  • WVU Students Protest Free Speech Zones on Campus

    February 12, 2002

    By Vicki Smith at The Associated Press State & Local Wire Led by an Abe Lincoln lookalike, dozens of students paraded around the West Virginia University campus Tuesday, protesting a decades-old policy that limits free speech to two outdoor areas the size of small classrooms. They timed their demonstration to coincide with Lincoln’s birthday, Black History Month and WVU Gay Pride Week, arguing the zones are not only unconstitutional, but also inadequate for a school with more than 20,000 students. “The First Amendment and other laws on the books cover free speech. There’s no need to keep us penned into zones,” […]

    » Read More
  • First Amendment only free speech policy needed

    February 11, 2002

    On Feb. 12, the Students for Economic Justice, in coalition with a variety of groups across the political spectrum, will protest the restriction of free speech at West Virginia University. The purpose of this column is to express support for that protest, and to explain to the University community how free speech is being squelched at WVU.   Free speech being squelched at WVU? What am I talking about? Surely, one might think, everyone acknowledges that free speech is essential to the life of a university. And so one might think that WVU would be committed to the right to […]

    » Read More
  • Fighting Shadows with FIRE

    January 1, 2000

    According to Dr. Alan Charles Kors, the professor and undergraduate curriculum chair of history who recently co-founded the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), the ultimate aim is to go out of business. “The goal of FIRE,” he says, “is to eradicate itself by ending the abuses of power that now dominate American academic life.” Kors doesn’t see that happening anytime soon, however, which is why he and Boston attorney Harvey Silverglate, his fellow scourge of “mandatory thought-control,” are planning to use FIRE to fight what he calls “the current assault on liberty and dignity on campuses.” Kors is […]

    » Read More
  • West Virginia University re-punishes fraternities for old violations, administrator falsely claims ‘student organizations do not have due process rights’

    December 11, 2018

    On Dec. 7, 2018, FIRE wrote a letter to West Virginia University asking the university to revoke sanctions imposed on five fraternities by its “Reaching the Summit” working group imposed without basic due process protections. The story of the Reaching the Summit initiative began in February 2018, when President Gordon Gee (no relation to the author) announced a moratorium on all fraternity and sorority activities owing to his “concern over continued behavioral issues.” Soon after, WVU announced a plan to make “the fraternity and sorority community at West Virginia University . . . an exemplar among peer and aspirant institutions.” […]

    » Read More
  • Leadership roundup: How college leaders are answering questions about free speech

    April 25, 2017

    Controversy around free speech on college campuses seems to only be escalating: Charles Murray’s disastrous visit to Middlebury College, the violent response to Milo Yiannopoulos’ visit to the University of California, Berkeley, the shutting down of Heather Mac Donald’s Claremont McKenna College event, and just last week, Berkeley’s attempt to shut down Ann Coulter’s visit to the birthplace of the free speech movement, which has already prompted a lawsuit. After a free speech controversy engulfs a college community, campus leaders are often left with questions from students, faculty, alumni, and the press about where the school stands on the issues. […]

    » Read More
  • West Virginia Joins Other State Courts in Protecting Faculty Records

    June 2, 2015

    Last month, West Virginia’s highest court joined several other state courts in striking a fair balance between the disclosure of public documents and protecting free academic discourse. On May 21, the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia held that West Virginia University School of Medicine (WVU) was not required to release a professor’s documents, emails, and other communications related to the “planning, preparation and editing necessary to produce a final published article.” The case arose when Highland Mining Company lodged a request with WVU under the state’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), seeking disclosure of documents related to several […]

    » Read More
  • This Month in FIRE History: The End of a Free Speech Zone at West Virginia University

    December 28, 2009

    Seven years ago this month, FIRE won our first victory against a so-called “free speech zone” at West Virginia University. The policy, which quarantined free expression to two small areas of campus, was brought to FIRE’s attention by the leaders of the West Virginia University Free Speech Consortium, Michael Bomford and Matthew Poe. It took many letters, a public exposure campaign, and a lawsuit from the Rutherford Institute for the university to adopt a new policy that declared all of campus a “free speech zone.” Since that time, FIRE has defeated similar free speech zones on campuses across the nation, […]

    » Read More
  • Free Speech Zones, Past and Present

    July 10, 2007

    In yesterday’s Campus Alert, FIRE’s weekly column in the New York Post, we discussed the disturbing prevalence of free speech zones at America’s public universities. Providing readers with a representative sample of schools that either currently maintain free speech zones or have done so in the past, we wrote: Onerous speech zones have been reported at Clemson University in South Carolina, Western Illinois University, Florida State University, University of Nebraska at Omaha, University of North Carolina-Greensboro, University of Oregon, California State University at Chico, West Virginia University, University of Nevada at Reno, Citrus College in California and the University of […]

    » Read More
  • WVU Newspaper on Presidential Candidate’s Free Speech Record

    April 10, 2007

    Bravo to The Daily Athenaeum, West Virginia University (WVU)’s student newspaper, whose editorial board voiced its concern over WVU presidential candidate M. Duane Nellis for free speech issues at Kansas State University (KSU), where Nellis currently serves as provost.   In 2005, FIRE joined an amicus brief denouncing the removal of student publications adviser Ronald Johnson after KSU administrators determined that the student newspaper had “quality issues.” Never mind that the paper won the Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker Award at least once as well as two Columbia Scholastic Press Association Gold Crown awards. Whatever the case, Johnson’s dismissal was widely […]

    » Read More
  • Emmett Hogan on 2006: The More Things Change…?

    January 5, 2007

    Emmett Hogan is a student at University of Michigan Law School and a luminary early FIRE employee. As we looked back on 2006 in campus rights and abuses I wanted to check in with him for his thoughts on the past year in FIRE history. This was his thoughtful response: One of FIRE’s most gripping cases from 2006 involved a breathtaking exercise in thought reform by Michigan State University. FIRE publicly challenged what MSU calls a “Student Accountability in Community Seminar” (SAC) which is intended to address student behavior that administrators consider unacceptable; the seminar is successful only when it […]

    » Read More
  • Zoning Out Free Speech at Joliet Junior College

    January 4, 2007

    Last week, the Daily Southtown (Ill.) published an editorial criticizing the trustees of Joliet Junior College for adopting a new free speech zone policy. Although the new policy seems to be improved because it moves these zones closer to where students actually gather, the editorial board rightly questions why the policy wasn’t completely abolished. The editorial correctly notes that “designating a ‘zone’ and setting up rules for how to use it doesn’t encourage free speech, it limits and discourages it.” Free speech zones are nothing more then a ruse used by college administrators to suppress the free exchange of ideas. […]

    » Read More
  • The Trouble with Free Speech Zones

    June 24, 2005

    The Daytona Beach News-Journal article that Charles discusses below highlights the controversy over many public universities’ “free speech zone” policies—policies that limit free speech to specific, and often tiny, areas of campus. FIRE President David French is quoted as saying that free speech zone policies are “very common”—“[i]t’s gotten to the point where if I’m looking at a policy and I don’t see free-speech zones, I’m shocked.” Universities often try to justify restrictive free speech zones by arguing that they are “reasonable time, place, and manner” regulations that are permissible under First Amendment law. However, free speech zone policies like […]

    » Read More
  • Calls for Censorship in Texas

    February 21, 2005

    The Denton, Texas, Record-Chronicle carried a story on Saturday (registration required) about an uproar over a free-expression issue at the University of North Texas. Apparently, the university chapter of the Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT) at UNT held a “Capture an Illegal Immigrant” event to draw attention to what they see as the problem of illegal immigration in Texas (you can read about it in the UNT student paper or read a bunch of articles about it at the UNT YCT website). Basically, YCT had a few students around campus put on orange shirts with the words “Illegal Immigrant” on […]

    » Read More
  • This Month in FIRE History: FIRE Declares Free Speech Should Not Be Quarantined to Tiny ‘Free Speech Zones’

    February 17, 2005

    Three years ago this month, back when FIRE was in its toddlerhood, we won our very first victory in the battle against so-called Free Speech Zones. These “speech zone” policies restrict free speech and expression to tiny corners of campus and have been identified (and often defeated, thankfully) at dozens of campuses across the country. West Virginia University has the dubious distinction of being our first “speech zone” case. The university’s policy stated: “Due to the limitations of space on the downtown campus, the two designated areas for free speech and assembly will be the amphitheater area of the Mountainlair […]

    » Read More