All 50 states have civil libel laws that allow victims of allegedly defamatory statements to seek compensation from speakers. Criminal libel laws are different in that they allow the state to fine or imprison speakers of defamatory statements. Seventeen states, including Colorado, currently have criminal defamation laws, according to a December 2005 update on criminal defamation statutes by the Media Law Resource Center.
The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, a group that advocates students' free expression rights, filed a federal lawsuit Oct. 31 against Troy University for a speech code FIRE's President David French called "incompatible with a free society."
More than 8,500 copies of The Daily Utah Chronicle were stolen from campus bins at the University of Utah in November in what newspaper staff said was an effort by the fraternity Pi Kappa Alpha to censor a letter to the editor about hazing.