Kamal Singh Masuta

Kamal Singh Masuta works to improve the Web, with expertise in the areas of website management, social media and graphic design. Follow him on Twitter @7skiestech.

Protecting Journalists Covering Conflict

It’s dangerous being a reporter, and freelancers and local journalists are particularly vulnerable, which is why CPJ is a founding member of the ACOS Alliance, which stands for ‘A Culture of Safety’ and promotes the Freelance Journalist Safety Principles. News organizations and press groups have signed up to a list of principles designed to improve…

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Critics Are Not Criminals: Comparative Study of Criminal Defamation Laws in the Americas

Criminal defamation prosecutions are still widespread throughout the Americas. In a new special report, prepared by Debevoise & Plimpton LLP in collaboration with the Thomson Reuters Foundation, CPJ finds a total of 32 out of 33 countries in the hemisphere maintain criminal penalties for defamation.

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Critics Not Criminals: Acknowledgements

Contents Critics Are Not Criminals: Comparative Study of Criminal Defamation Laws in the Americas The Thomson Reuters Foundation is grateful to Debevoise & Plimpton LLP who coordinated this research, together with Benedetti & Benedetti, Brigard Urrutia, Cariola Díez Pérez-Cotapos & Cía. Ltda, Díaz Durán & Asociados, Estudio Rodrigo, Elias & Medrano, Medina, Rosenthal & Asociados,…

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Critics Not Criminals: Foreword

Despite a growing consensus that criminal defamation laws should be abolished, there has been an alarming resurgence of their use in the Americas. From North America to South America, over two-thirds of the governments in the region routinely use these laws to silence dissent and to deprive citizens of information on matters of public interest.…

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Critics Not Criminals: Introduction

After three decades of democratization, the current state of freedom of expression in Latin America is undoubtedly more open than in the period of military rule. But the legislative and judicial reforms necessary to institutionalize freedom of expression are still widely lacking.

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Critics Not Criminals: Regional Jurisprudence

Below is a summary of the key Inter-American Court of Human Rights (“IACtHR”) decisions rendered on issues of criminal defamation since 2001. Although holdings from the IACtHR are not controlling in all jurisdictions in the Americas, they provide useful guidance on this type of case and set important precedents for further application of the laws…

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Criminal Defamation Laws in North America

Contents Critics Are Not Criminals: Comparative Study of Criminal Defamation Laws in the Americas I. Canada A. Criminal Laws Restricting Freedom of Expression Despite frequent criticism and infrequent application, Canada’s Criminal Code continues to contain provisions criminalizing both blasphemous libel15 and defamatory libel.16 Section 298(1) of the Code describes “defamatory libel” as a “matter published,…

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Critics Not Criminals: Executive Summary

Laws that permit journalists to be prosecuted criminally for the content of their reporting are considered to present a hazard to freedom of the press and to the right of citizens to be informed. As the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (“IACHR”) described in its 1994 Annual Report, such laws have an “inevitable chilling effect…

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Criminal Defamation Laws in Central America

Contents Critics Are Not Criminals: Comparative Study of Criminal Defamation Laws in the Americas I. Belize A. Criminal Laws Restricting Freedom of Expression 1. Libel and Defamation According to the Belize Libel and Defamation Act, a criminal prosecution of “any proprietor, publisher, editor or any person responsible for the publication of a newspaper for any…

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Criminal Defamation Laws in The Caribbean

Contents Critics Are Not Criminals: Comparative Study of Criminal Defamation Laws in the Americas I. Antigua and Barbuda A. Criminal Laws Restricting Freedom of Expression Defamation remains a criminal offence in Antigua and Barbuda under the Libel and Slander Act, which dates to 1876 and was last updated in 1976. The Act, which governs both…

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