University of Westminster
MA in International Journalism
Freedom of Expression
Comparing Freedom of Expression in the Statutory Law and the Sharia Law (Human Rights Act 1998 of The British law as an exemplar)
Dissertation Submitted for
The MA Degree in International Journalism
University of Westminster
Motasem Ahmed Dalloul
Copyright (2012), University of Westminster and Motasem Ahmed Dalloul
Getting in touch with media law during the first semester of my Masters gave me a sense of the importance of law in general because it consists of acts and articles which organise most issues in the human’s life in a way that protects ethics and morals. Regardless of the hypocrisy and double-standards of the countries which raise high the slogan of Human Rights, I liked the Human Rights Conventions that were laid down by these countries. Therefore, I decided to research some points in these conventions that are related to my study in order to nurture my knowledge in this great field of the human sciences. Then, I thought deliberately about the benefit of exerting much effort to get such knowledge since it is existed, well-explained and well-organised, in handy books. But after looking by historical and religious study as far back as some centuries ago, I found that my own culture, Islam, had plenty of law provisions that helped its people not only to protect their ethics and morals, but also to spread them all over the world. Through deliberate and objective study, I found that many of the social reformers, whose thoughts led to the emergence of the modern criteria of human rights, were originally affected by the roots of the Islamic culture. I also found a lot of those old and even modern reformers who praised the old provisions of the Sharia Law and they also praised the prosperity which was an outcome of implementing it. The Western writer Patricia Crone (2005: p. 218-219) said referring to how those old provisions of law were true bases of a moral society: “Medieval Muslims did not write utopias in the sense of imaginary travel accounts or other descriptions of ideal societies which do not exist, … they were not given to seeking ideals outside their own civilisation at all. But they did place a golden age right at the beginning of their own history, and their numerous accounts of this age add up to a detailed utopia of great emotive power… It was a time when the Muslims had all the virtues of tribesmen and none of their vices, for thanks to Islam there was no feuding, no factionalism, and no disorder, just austerity, solidarity, and total devotion to the truth.” Therefore, I decided to look for the provisions of that old law which are related to my study and compare them with their counterparts in the modern human rights’ conventions. In order to limit my research, I decided to take the articles related to my study, media law, in the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA) of the British Law to represent the leading international human rights conventions.
Part one: Preface
In this dissertation I am going to explain how both the HRA and the Sharia Law deal with the concept of freedom of expression. As long as such argument is new and uncommon because of the lack of references that studied it, which resulted in an ambiguous perception in the minds of people towards the Sharia Law and its sources, there must be a kind of primary definition of the Sharia Law, its sources and how the Sharia scholars (Sharia Jurists) deal with these sources to regulate law items.
This expression is going to be referred to as a theological-historical concept since the Sharia was revealed through a prophet, this makes it a theological subject matter, and it is 15 centuries old, this gives it a historical background. Sharia (šarīʿah) is all religious rituals that Allah (SWT) has imposed on Muslims, via his Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) regarding beliefs, rules and day-to-day life among...
...Freedom of Assembly.
By: Jassmine Joseph A/P Franklin Tilakan & Marsha Joan D’cruz
In Malaysia, the right to assemble peacefully and without arms is provided for by the Federal Constitution Article 10(1)(b) 1subject to restrictions imposed by laws which Parliament deems necessary or expedient in the interest of national security or public order Article 10(2)(b).2There are various laws in Malaysia providing for the preservation of national security and public order but the Act of Parliament that imposes restrictions on the constitutional right to peaceful assembly is the Police Act 1967, Act 344 (revised 1988). One of the high profile cases that discuses about freedom of assembly is Chai Choon Hon v Ketua Polis Daerah Kampar and Government of Malaysia .3
In this case, the Democratic Action Party (DAP) Secretary of the Kampong Baru, Malim Nawar branch, Chai Choon Hon applied on August 3rd 1984 for a license to hold a DAP solidarity dinner and lion dance in public space. His application was accepted, but stamped with seven restrictions – two of which he found to be highly problematic. The first condition was that the number of speakers at the event must not exceed seven. The second condition was that under no means were the speeches to touch on political issues.
Under Section 27 (2) of the Malaysian Police Act, any group wanting to hold an assembly or meeting or form a procession in a public area must first apply...
Explain the reference to legal principle and relevant case law, the legal aspect of placing the ‘Klick’ clock in the shop window with a price tag attached.
Ann antiques has a rare ‘Klick’ clock on its shop with price tags of €1,000 attached. In spite of its wording the sign in the window does not constitute a legal offer, it is merely an invitation to treat. Invitation to treat is an indication that the person who invite is willing to enter into a negotiation but it is not yet prepared to be bound. This case may be seen in Fisher v Bell (1961). It was held that having switch-blade knives in the window of a shop was not the same as offering them for sale.
Analyze the reference to legal principle and relevant because law, the legal effect of the event that transpired between Ann and Beth ignoring the conversation that took place between Carol and Beth and advice as to whether the valid contract exist between them.
The original invitation to treat at €1,000 was met by an offer from Beth which offers €500 on the ‘Klick’ clock. After Ann received an offer from Beth, Ann made a counter offer on the clock that she would sell €750 for it. It is up to Beth to decide whether to accept the offer or not. A counter offer arises when the offeree tries to change the terms of an original offer.
For example, the Hyde v Wrench (1940) case. In that case, on 6th June, Wrench offered to sell his estate to Hyde for £1,000 but...
...Freedom of Speech and expression means the right to express one's own convictions and opinions freely by words of mouth, writing, printing, pictures or any other mode. The freedom of speech is regarded as the first condition of liberty. Accepted that the right to freedom of speech is the essence of free society and it must be safeguarded at all time. Liberty to express opinions and ideas without hindrance, and especially without fear of punishment plays significant role in the development of that particular society and ultimately for that state. The freedom of expression includes all forms of art including cartoon, media-print and electronic etc.. The freedom of speech and expression do not confer an absolute right to express one's thoughts freely. Clause (2) of Article 19 of the Indian Constitution enables the legislature to impose certain restrictions on free speech such as security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States, public order, decency and morality, contempt of court, defamation, incitement to an offence, and sovereignty and integrity of India. Freedom of speech and expression are guaranteed not only by the constitution or statutes of various states but also by various international conventions like Universal Declaration of...
...saying that freedom of speech is the first step of reaching to a free society . Despite the fact that people need to reveal their personal thoughts about politics and criticize it in any facet, many governments are against this right . In this essay I will outline the arguments for and against necessity of freedomspeech for a free society. As far as I concerned, with the enormous pace of development of technology in our modern-age and mass producing of TV, Radio and accessibility of most of the people to internet, people are aware of their rights and they have the knowledge that by criticizing and showing their disapproval they can obtain their needs. To give more details, I should mention that people have learnt from the history that by having the right to say their ideas and have the security after that, the society will be better place to live.
Added to that many politician are against the idea that people and media should be free to show their thoughts . They also create rules for banning the media and set some red lines for censorships . Additionally governments are afraid of being accused by media in any way . It is an undeniable fact that so many of politician want to hide their dark sides, so they prefer limit the people’s freedoms. I am strongly of the opinion that people and media should have the right to state their thoughts and criticize everyone in the government or even a...
...Amendment I of the United States Constitution states, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances" ("Bill"). Many Americans believe that online content should be regulated. However, internet censorship violates our rights to freedom of expression, association, speech, and press. The U.S. Constitution protects those rights, and as Americans we should make sure to hold on to them at any cost. Government regulation of the Internet would threaten its very existence. In addition, if an attempt to censor the Internet was made, the system would be so problematic and error-prone that it would most likely fail.
On February 1, 1996 the U.S. Congress enacted the Communications Decency Act. This act created criminal penalties for the "knowing" transmission over the Internet of material considered "indecent to minors." These provisions also made it a crime to make any computer network transmission with the intent to "annoy" or "harass" the recipient, and extended a criminal ban on discussing abortion devices and procedures to computer network communications ("Overview"). This was, in essence, a bill designed to censor the Internet. In response, several...
...Freedom of Speech and Expression and Journalism
Problems faced in the industry, and the solutions and guidelines to the problem.
A report done by Ooi K.L Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman
*Note: This is an undergraduate individual assignment report. It might not be the best report, yet it is still referable for other undergraduates who are doing the same subject area. ** This assignment was done for the subject UAMG 3063 - CommunicationLaw in the third year of Degree in Public Relations under the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman
Freedom of Speech and Expression and Journalism Journalism is a difficult profession in Malaysia and they face impediments peculiar to the society (Radhakrishnan 2010). Radhakrishnan says in his report that journalish has an honorable objective which is the circulation and dissemination of information including news, comment and opinion as well as entertainment. He also states that journalists should be borne in mind that in order to enjoy to status of a profession, the practitioners are expected at all times to conduct themselves in an ethical manner upholding the best tradition of the profession The role of journalism in a democratic society needs special mention. It is a necessary and essential prerequisite for democracy to survive. It acts as the fourth estate and it is also the essential watchdog over the...
...FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND EXPRESSION
Speech is God's gift to mankind. Through speech a human being conveys his thoughts, sentiments and feeling to others. Freedom of speech and expression is thus a natural right, which a human being acquires on birth. It is, therefore, a basic right. "Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion andexpression; the right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek and receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers" proclaims the Universal Declaration Of Human Rights (1948). The people of India declared in the Preamble of the Constitution, which they gave unto themselves their resolve to secure to all the citizens liberty of thought and expression. This resolve is reflected in Article 19(1)(a) which is one of the Articles found in Part III of the Constitution, which enumerates the Fundamental Rights.
Man as rational being desires to do many things, but in a civil society his desires have to be controlled, regulated and reconciled with the exercise of similar desires by other individuals. The guarantee of each of the above right is, therefore, restricted by the Constitution in the larger interest of the community. The right to freedom of speech and...
...Freedom of speech and expression
The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1 adopted in 1948, provides, in Article 19, that:
Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.
Technically, as a resolution of the United Nations General Assembly rather than a treaty, it is not legally binding in its entirety on members of the UN. Furthermore, whilst some of its provisions are considered to form part of customary international law, there is dispute as to which. Freedom of speech is granted unambiguous protection in international law by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights which is binding on around 150 nations.
In adopting the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Monaco, Australia and the Netherlands insisted on reservations to Article 19 insofar as it might be held to affect their systems of regulating and licensing broadcasting.
The majority of African constitutions provide legal protection for freedom of speech. However, these rights are exercised inconsistently in practice.
1. The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights,...