Freedom of Speech as a Right to Know

34 Pages Posted: 16 Nov 2020

See all articles by Tao Huang

Tao Huang

Duke University School of Law

Date Written: October 29, 2020


Since its birth, the right to know and the related practice of open information were based on the constitutional right of free speech. The opposite point, which is understudied, is also true: the right to know also forms the basis of freedom of speech, or even, freedom of speech is mainly the right to know. On the one hand, to know is necessary for expression, as it serves both the interests of speakers and listeners, and the normative values behind them; on the other, to know is more urgently needed for us to express ourselves in the information era. To reshape the freedom of speech by the right to know has both implications for theory and practice. In designing the right in practice, we need to compare different modes of legislation and consider its scope and strength.

Keywords: right to know, freedom of speech, freedom of information, open information

Suggested Citation

Huang, Tao, Freedom of Speech as a Right to Know (October 29, 2020). University of Cincinnati Law Review, Vol. 89, No. 1, 2020, Available at SSRN:

Tao Huang (Contact Author)

Duke University School of Law ( email )

Durham, NC
United States
9197682898 (Phone)

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