We want to hear from you for an upcoming podcast episode

Last week, Google fired engineer James Damore for writing a memo criticizing Google’s diversity initiatives and its political culture, and speculating that “differences in distributions of traits between men and women may in part explain why we don’t have 50% representation of women in tech and leadership.” Just a couple of days later, CNN fired commentator Jeffrey Lord for tweeting the Nazi salute “Sieg Heil!” at the president of the liberal watchdog site Media Matters (Lord claims that his tweet was meant to be a mockery of fascism).

Neither of these firings are violations of the First Amendment, since the First Amendment protects speech from government censorship or punishment, and Google and CNN are both private companies.  But they’ve still sparked intense debate about how companies should handle employees with controversial opinions, the impact those decisions have on the public conversation, and whether a company as central to human communication as Google has unique responsibilities when it comes to free expression

For an upcoming podcast episode, we want to know what you think.  

Leave a voicemail for us at (202) 643-9071.  Or press the “Start Recording” button to leave a message for The First Five Podcast right from your browser.  We might play your message in an upcoming podcast episode.  (You don’t need to leave your real name, unless you want to–anonymous speech is protected by the First Amendment).  

2 thoughts on “We want to hear from you for an upcoming podcast episode

  1. The Google engineer used company equipment and Company time to violate company policy. As a lawyer, I don’t think he has a case. I suggest that a series of comprehensive in depth but simple English explanations of the limitations on first amendment rights should be undertaken and widely published. I suggest using the Newseum’s excellent summary of the nine categories of limitations on free speech has a structure. Then the series can explore each of the nine categories with plain English discussion of Supreme Court rulings and interviews with legal scholars who have argued First Amendment cases before the Court.

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