The Cordell Institute and Washington University privacy law students recently held their inaugural conversations with students at The University of Paris- Panthéon-Sorbonne. This was the first in a series of trans-Atlantic conversations among our students about the leading issues of technology policy, privacy, and freedom of expression.
The November 12, 2021 topic was the moderation of speech by government and private platforms, including the Facebook Oversight Board’s decision to suspend the account of former President Donald Trump. Cordell Director and Professor Neil Richards and Sorbonne Professor Célia Zolynski used the decision as a starting point for students to discuss the broader issues it implicates. The American and French students enjoyed two hours of robust conversation regarding the role of government and companies in policing speech, the role of social media in a democracy, and the standards that should apply to offensive or dangerous expression in digital environments.