THE SUPREME COURT OF CANADA’S VICE MEDIA DECISION: THE GOOD, THE BAD, THE UGLY AND THE QUESTIONS THAT REMAIN.
On November 30, 2018, the Supreme Court of Canada rendered its decision in the closely watched VICE appeal. The big question at the heart of VICE was simple: when will courts compel the media to give police material relating to a journalist’s previously published communications with non-confidential sources for the police to use against those sources?
Unlike universities, Ontario’s colleges have resisted making explicit commitments to academic freedom for academic staff and to affirming the foundational importance of freedom of expression for the work of the college.
The European Court of Human Rights in the recent judgment of E.S. v. Austria, ECHR 360 (2018) held that the conviction of woman in Austria for denigrating a person who is an object of veneration under the Austrian Criminal Code did not breach Article 10 (freedom of expression) of the European Convention on Human Rights.
For over a year, Google’s Sidewalk Labs has flooded the Internet with watercolour images of bits of a future ‘smart city’ neighbourhood in Toronto’s Quayside district. But unlike normal developers, Sidewalk Labs has yet to make a complete and formal application to the planning department and city council. And citizens do not have any details about the business plan for the proposed development.
Mystery on the Waterfront: How the "Smart City" Allure Led a Major Public Agency in Toronto Into a Reckless Deal with Big Tech
Once upon a time, Waterfront Toronto (WT) was a high-profile public agency that had largely succeeded in combining enthusiastic support for upscale waterfront condos with a progressive civic agenda – no mean feat in an age of increasing political polarization and urban inequality. For example, zoning bylaws for waterfront developments, put in place before any condo building be designed, require at least 20% of affordable housing.
There’s been a ceasefire in the “legal Twitter war” between Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson and three people who sued him for blocking them from his Twitter account. The three plaintiffs argued that in blocking them, Mayor Watson was violating their constitutional right to free expression.
Eventually Watson and the plaintiffs reached a legal settlement. But initially the Mayor’s position was that he would fight the suit on the grounds that the Twitter account in question was held in his personal and not mayoral capacity and therefore, constitutional rights weren’t applicable.
What is and what isn’t censorship? It’s hard for me to believe this discussion is even necessary at this particular moment in history.
The controversy over invoking section 33, the Charter’s override, in Ontario appears to have subsided. By imposing a stay on the lower Court ruling of Justice Belobaba, the Ontario Court of Appeal salvaged the Ford government’s effort to interfere with Toronto’s pending municipal election.
Whose speech is compelled more than anyone’s in the country? Why teachers and students in K-12 schools, of course. From the singing of the National Anthem each morning, to the recitation of historical dates and multiplication tables, to astronomical theories, to dress codes, to the pep rallies, to the macaroni covered mothers’ day cards, to the schedule of mandatory holidays, each school student and teacher is compelled to express herself in the correct fashion at the correct time.