Global Freedom of Expression

25 March

Hate Speech: The Enduring Problem of Thresholds

  • 12:00pm-1:00pm ET (New York); 4:00pm - 5:00pm GMT (Dakar); 5:00pm - 6:00pm CET (Paris)

Hate Speech: The Enduring Problem of Thresholds

The lack of universally accepted definition of hate speech has led to a myriad of interpretations from domestic, regional, and international institutions. As a result, courts, legislatures, and policy makers around the world have produced a variety of responses and approaches towards hate speech. In this webinar, the panelists reflected on existing trends and practices across regional, and international and national institutions in handling hate speech. It also addressed issues on hate speech by broadly defined themes, including  genocide denial and antisemitism, ethnic and religious hate speech and sexual orientation, among others. This webinar included a presentation of the conclusions of the Special Collection Paper on the Case Law on Hate Speech published by CGFoE.

The French language database and this webinar were made possible with the support of UNESCO Multi-Donor Programme on Freedom of Expression and Safety of Journalists (MDP), and the Cyrilla Collaborative, with funding from The Centre for Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law (CIPIT) at Strathmore University, Nairobi, Kenya.

CGFoE is thankful to ARTICLE 19 Senegal and other colleagues in West Africa and Europe for supporting this webinar.


  • Natalie Alkiviadou, Senior Research Fellow at the Future of Free Speech at Vanderbilt University (USA).
  • Bernard Chevalier, Advisor to the First Civil Chamber, French Court of Cassation.


  • Anderson Javiel Dirocie De León, Legal and Program Consultant at Global Freedom of Expression.


  • Francois Jauny, Researcher (doctoral student).

Presentation: Anderson Javiel Dirocie De León, Legal and Program Consultant at Global Freedom of Expression

He is an international lawyer specialized in Public International Law and Human Rights. He has worked in several international courts and bodies, including the International Criminal Court, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. In addition, he worked in the Electoral High Court of the Dominican Republic and in various NGOs. He holds an LL.M. from Harvard Law School (2023), an LLM in Advanced Studies in Public International Law from Leiden University (2018), and an LL.B. Summa Cum Laude from the Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra (PUCMM) (2017). Within the framework of these latter studies, he did her research work on International Law and the Internet, in particular, the extension of human rights protection on social media platforms with a case study on the Oversight Board.

Moderator: Francois Jauny, Researcher (doctoral student)

Mr. Jauny is currently pursuing a doctoral degree at the University of Nantes, where he is engaged in research for his thesis centered on Hate Speech before the European Court of Human Rights. His study critically examines the foundational principles, methodologies, and rationale employed by the European Court when addressing instances of Hate Speech. Additionally, he brings to his academic pursuits a wealth of professional experience, spanning over 12 years in the field of international cooperation, notably within organizations such as the United Nations and the European Union. His professional endeavors have primarily focused on providing intergovernmental support for the Rule of Law and the justice sector. Mr. Jauny holds a Master’s degree in International and European Human Rights Law from the University of Nantes, awarded in 2022, as well as a Master’s degree in International Affairs from Columbia University, obtained in 2007.

Natalie Alkiviadou, Senior Research Fellow at the Future of Free Speech at Vanderbilt University (USA)

Her research interests lie in the freedom of expression, the far-right, hate speech, hate crime and non-discrimination. She holds a PhD (Law) from the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. She has published three monographs, namely ‘The Far-Right in International and European Law’ (Routledge 2019), ‘Legal Challenges to the Far-right: Lessons from England and Wales’ (Routledge 2019) and ‘The Far-Right in Greece and the Law’ (Routledge 2022). She has published on hate speech, free speech and the far-right in a wide range of peer reviewed journals, has been reviewer for journals such as the International Journal of Human Rights, The Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights and guest editor for the International Journal of Semiotics and the Law. Natalie has over ten years experience in working with civil society, educators and public servants on human rights education and has participated in European actions such as the High-Level Group on Combatting Racism, Xenophobia and Other Forms of Intolerance. Natalie has been the country researcher for the 2019 European Network against Racism report on Hate Crime and the 2022 report on structural racism. She has drafted handbooks, strategy papers and shadow reports for projects funded by the Anna Lindh Foundation, the European Commission and the European Youth Foundation, on themes such as hate speech. Natalie is an international Fellow (2022/23) of the ISLC – Information Society Law Centre of the Università degli Studi di Milano.

Bernard Chevalier, Advisor to the First Civil Chamber, French Court of Cassation

Born on 11/20/1961, judicial auditor at the French National School of Magistrates (ENM) from January 11, 1985; Magistrate’s Court judge in Moulins from January 8, 1988; Magistrate’s Court judge in Vichy from January 10, 1991; seconded to the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs for secondment to the European Union Court of First Instance from October 10, 1998; legal adviser to the French Advocate General at the Court of Justice of the European Union as of January 1, 2002; First Vice-President of the Nîmes Regional Court as of August 24, 2011; Chamber President at the Paris Court of Appeal as of August 29, 2016; member of the First Civil Chamber of the Court of Cassation as of October 28, 2019.