Volume 15 (2009)

Volume 15 (2009) / Issue 1

Paul Wragg, '‘Free Speech is not Valued if only Valued Speech is Free’: Connolly, Consistency and some Article 10 Concerns' (2009) 15 European Public Law, Issue 1, pp. 111–132


This article suggests that different free speech principles apply in cases involving ‘journalists’ compared to ‘non–journalists’, as in Connolly v. DPP. Strict principles apply when a journalist’s right to speak is threatened because the media exercise a valuable public watchdog role worth protecting even when competing interests exist. When non–journalists speak the same strict principles are absent even though speech of similar public interest may be involved. The justification for allowing interference is that such extreme and unpopular speech is not sufficiently valuable. This distinction, though superficially appealing, is troubling, not least because non–journalists might also act as public watchdog.

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ISSN: 1354-3725
ID: EURO2009007