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University and free speech questions are really a lot of different issues often deliberately blurred together. There are many different venues and participants. These range from situations with a captive audience and the direct subsidization and endorsement of the speaker such as graduation talks by outside speakers to internal venues where students can present and discuss differing views. Students have a right to be upset when their university hires a Condelesa Rice as commencement speaker and pays her an honorarium or gives her a honorary degree. In contrast, the university should place no constraints on he content of a student newspaper as long as it stays within the libel laws. Outside speakers fall between- what does the speaker get from the university and are they voices that have something to say? If controversial, what opportunities are there for the opposite side to be heard? The issues with Charles Murray at Middlebury were because he appeared to be endorsed by the administration and given a chance to hawk his book on campus. He was hardly a speaker needing a free venue from the university. It would have been fair to enforce a question and response period or even require a debate format with an opposing speaker. Instead Murray got a forum restricted to his views. The Berkeley stuff involves deliberate mischaracterization by the right - the weren't suppressed they just failed to pay for expensive venues and cost the university a lot of money for security. I wonder if Berkeley can sue them for their losses?
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The data science venn diagram link in the article appears broken. The diagram is at https://s3.amazonaws.com/aws.drewconway.com/viz/venn_diagram/data_science.html
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Aug 17, 2017