The Volokh Conspiracy

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Free Speech

The Journal of Free Speech Law, a New Faculty-Edited (Peer-Reviewed) Law Journal


I'm delighted to announce the founding of the Journal of Free Speech Law, a new faculty-edited law journal. (Motto: "It is an experiment, as all life is an experiment.") The journal will publish in print as well as electronically; the first issue—a symposium on regulation of social media removal decisions—will come out in Summer 2021. (Many thanks to the Stanton Foundation for a generous multiyear grant that will allow all this to happen.)

Future articles will be selected by our "robe & gown" editorial board, which currently consists of:

Prof. Amy Adler
Prof. Jane Bambauer
Prof. Ashutosh Bhagwat
Judge Stephanos Bibas
Prof. Vincent Blasi
Judge José A. Cabranes
Prof. Clay Calvert
Dean Erwin Chemerinsky
Prof. Alan Chen
Justice Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar
Judge Douglas H. Ginsburg
Prof. Jamal Greene
Prof. Heidi Kitrosser
Prof. Andrew Koppelman
Prof. Ronald J. Krotoszynski, Jr.
Prof. Toni Massaro
Prof. Michael McConnell
Prof. Helen Norton
Prof. Robert Post
Judge A. Raymond Randolph
Judge Neomi Rao
Prof. Jennifer Rothman
Judge Robert Sack
Prof. Frederick Schauer
Dean Rodney A. Smolla
Prof. Geoffrey Stone
Judge David R. Stras
Judge Jeffrey S. Sutton
Prof. Rebecca Tushnet
Prof. Eugene Volokh
Prof. James Weinstein
Judge Diane Wood


The executive editors will be Jane Bambauer, Ashutosh Bhagwat, and me, and I will also serve as the editor-in-chief. If you're interested in seeing links to our articles, as well as the occasional other announcement, follow us on Twitter at @JournalSpeech.

We plan to publish:

  1. Articles that say something we don't already know.
  2. Articles with all sorts of approaches: doctrinal, theoretical, historical, empirical, or otherwise.
  3. Articles dealing with speech, press, assembly, petition, or expression more broadly.
  4. Generally not articles purely focused on the Free Exercise Clause or Establishment Clause (which we leave to other publications, such as the Journal of Law & Religion), except if they also substantially discuss religious speech.
  5. Articles not just about the First Amendment, but also about state constitutional free speech provisions, federal and state statutes and regulations protecting or restricting speech, common-law rules protecting or restricting speech, and private organizations' speech regulations.
  6. Articles about U.S. law, foreign law, comparative law, or international law.
  7. Both big, ambitious work and narrower material.
  8. Articles that are useful to the academy, to the bench, or to the bar (and if possible, to all three).
  9. Articles arguing for broader speech protection, narrower speech protection, or anything else.

We also plan to publish quickly, without interfering with the author's style, voice, or perspective.

Our submission guidelines: You can submit to the journal via Scholastica, at https://‌

  1. As with many other faculty-edited journals, we require exclusive submission. Any article you submit to us must not be under consideration elsewhere.
  2. In exchange, we expect to give you an answer within two weeks.
  3. Instead of a cover letter, please submit at most one page (and preferably just a paragraph or two) explaining how your article is novel. If there is a particular way of showing that (e.g., it's the first article to discuss how case X and doctrine Y interact), please let us know.
  4. Please submit articles single-spaced, in a proportionally spaced font.
  5. Please make sure that the Introduction quickly and clearly explains the main claims you are making.
  6. Please avoid extended background sections reciting familiar Supreme Court precedents or other well-known matters. We prefer articles that get right down to the novel material (if necessary, quickly explaining the necessary legal principles as they go).
  7. Each article should be as short as possible, and as long as necessary.
  8. Like everyone else, we like simple, clear, engaging writing.
  9. We are open to student-written work, and we evaluate it under the same standards applicable to work written by others.

If your article is accepted:

  1. We will give you whatever editing feedback we came up with as we were reviewing your article. We will generally not offer line editing.
  2. We will assign a starting page number, which you can use for future citations even before it is published, and we will be prepared to immediately publish the article online and on Westlaw and likely Lexis, once the article is suitably revised and polished. (We will publish in print every several months, as enough articles are finished to form an issue.)
  3. We will defer to your authorial judgment on editing questions, except when we think accuracy or attention to counterarguments requires changes (in which case we will of course not make any changes without your approval).
  4. We expect authors who are professors at American law schools to have cite-checking and proofreading done by their own research assistants. If that is a hardship for you, please let us know.
  5. We will have the article proofread near the end of the publishing process, just to catch any remaining glitches.

Please submit your new articles to us, if you have written something that would fit our mission; and please follow us on Twitter at @JournalSpeech.