Open Topics/Freedom of Speech
Freedom of speech is the freedom to speak freely without censorship or
limitation. The synonymous term freedom of expression is sometimes used to
indicate not only freedom of verbal speech but any act of seeking, receiving and
imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used. In practice, the
right to freedom of speech is not absolute in any country and the right is
commonly subject to limitations, such as on "hate speech".
The right to freedom of speech is recognized as a human right under Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and recognized in international human rights law in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). The ICCPR recognizes the right to freedom of speech as "the right to hold opinions without interference. Everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression". Furthermore freedom of speech is recognized in European, inter-American and African regional human rights law.
Freedom of speech and expression are closely related, yet distinct from, the concept of freedom of thought.