Archive

Wisconsin Introduces Legislation to Prevent Public Schools From Teaching Critical Race Theory

Wisconsin became the latest state to introduce legislation aimed at preventing public schools from teaching “divisive” concepts around race and gender. On September 28th, the Wisconsin state assembly passed a Republican-backed bill to prevent “critical race theory” from being taught in the state’s public schools.

Read More

Judge Issues Default Judgement In Alex Jones’ Sandy Hook Defamation Suits

A district court judge for Travis County, Texas issued a default judgment against Alex Jones for failing to comply with discovery requests in the defamation suits brought by two families in the Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shooting. The shooting, which occurred on December 14, 2012, resulted in the deaths of 20 children and six adult school staff members. The rulings mean that the suits will proceed to trial to determine how much Jones and his media company, Infowars, will pay the parents for defamation and emotional stress.

Read More

Trump Loses Bid To Enforce NDA Against Former White House Aide

A mediator with the American Arbitration Association decided on September 24th that a Non Disclosure Agreement (NDA) signed by a former White House aide was too vague to be enforceable. Omarosa Manigault Newman, a former contestant on Donald Trump’s TV show, “The Apprentice,” joined the White House staff as the communications director for the Office of Public Liaison after Trump won the 2016 presidential election.

Read More

Robot Love, Xtender, Art AI Gallery

First Amendment Watch Teacher Guide: Copyrights and Artificial Intelligence: Should Creative Works Authored by AI Be Eligible for Copyright Protection?

In 2018, Christie’s auction house in New York sold a painting, Portrait of Edmond Bellamy, for $432,500. This sales price was significant. Not because it was exceptionally high—Christie’s has had many sales that would dwarf this price—but because the painting was not made by a human being. It was created by a computer using artificial intelligence (AI).

Read More

New Survey Reveals Most Americans Value the First Amendment But are Divided on Key Issues

A new survey released by the Freedom Forum entitled, “The First Amendment: Where America Stands,” reveals that while 94% of Americans value the First Amendment as vital, they are nonetheless divided on certain key issues. Many Americans appear reluctant to engage in speech that may be seen as controversial. According to the survey of 3,000 Americans in July and August 2020, more than four in 10 people say that, at least once, they haven’t expressed an opinion out of fear of being punished.

Read More

Scales of Justice

Texas Community College Sued for Violating Former Professor’s First Amendment Rights

Collin College, a community college in McKinney, Texas is being sued by a former professor for violating her free speech and assembly rights. In a lawsuit filed on September 22nd in the U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of Texas Sherman Division, Suzanne Jones alleges that Collin College administrators pushed her out for criticizing the school’s COVID-19 response, and in retaliation for two previous incidents in 2017 and 2020.

Read More

Two Internet Trade Groups Sue Texas Over a Recent Law Regulating Social Media Companies

Two Internet trade associations are suing Texas and its Attorney General Ken Paxton over a recent law that regulates social media companies’ ability to remove users from their platforms. Filed on September 22nd in the U.S. District Court for the District of Texas Austin Division, NetChoice and Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA), which represent Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and others, contend that  House Bill 20 violates the First Amendment. 

Read More

Female Chess Legend Sues Netflix for Defamation Over “The Queen’s Gambit”

Nona Gaprindashvili, the first-ever female chess grandmaster, is suing Netflix for defamation over a statement made about her in its series, “The Queen’s Gambit.” The suit, filed on September 16th in the U.S. District Court Central District of California, Western Division, alleges that a scene in the series derided Gaprindashvili’s career and damaged her reputation.

Read More