Symposium: Humor and Free Speech in the Digital Age

Columbia Global Freedom of Expression, Online, 14 October 2022

Organizers: Dr. Alberto Godioli (University of Groningen) and Prof. Laura Little (Temple Law School)

Negotiating the legal boundaries of free speech is a crucial challenge for democracy—especially so in the digital age, as potentially harmful material can easily gain pervasive circulation (Brison and Gelber 2019). Humor is a particularly demanding testing ground in this respect; while the right to humorous expression is vital to democratic societies, jokes can sometimes become a vehicle for unlawful speech, such as defamation or incitement to violence. This problem is further amplified today by the growing fragmentation of ‘irony-laden internet subcultures,’ where the difference between e.g. racist humor and satire of racism often becomes imperceptible (Nagle 2017).

AHSN 2023: A Human Right to Humour

The 29th Conference of the Australian Humour Studies Network will take place on 6-7 (Zoom, online only) and 9-10 (in-person only) February 2023. The conference focuses on the theme ‘A Human Right to Humour’.

HUMOR special issue: ‘The Difficulty of Judging Jests’ (2022)

HUMOR: International Journal of Humor Research has just published a special issue titled ‘Humor and the Law: The Difficulty of Judging Jests’, guest-edited by Brigitte Adriaensen, Andrew Bricker, Alberto Godioli and Ted Laros.

The special issue features articles on humor-related jurisprudence from Europe, the United States, India, Latin America and Australia, spanning from the 18th century to the present.