Legal Resources

News on notable legislative changes and other legal issues. Special attention is paid to significant trials marking the emergence of some new jurisprudence

Defending media freedom in Poland

The European Commission has adopted a framework to address threats to the rule of law by member states. The framework, which was initiated against Poland due to changes to its Media Law, entails a three-stage process of assessment, recommendations and monitoring

read more European Policy Media Law Poland EU Member States

German Court negates injunctive relief concerning research work

The Higher Regional Court of Hamburg has ruled that the plaintiff's interest against the footage made of him did not outweigh the broadcaster's freedom of the press, which also includes research work and collecting information and footage

read more Germany Media freedom Legal protection

ECJ: Commission has to enable access to written submissions

The European Commission refused a German Pirate Party deputy access to Austria-related written submissions. After the party deputy filed a lawsuit, the European Court of Justice decided in his favor, in accordance with a decree overseeing access to EU government documents

read more European Policy Access to information EU Member States Germany

German Press Council deals with coverage of refugee crisis and footage of murder

Dealing with complaints about the coverage of the refugee crisis, the German Press Council legitimizes the use of emotional pictures if they serve the public interest by showing the result of war and the risky business with smuggling gangs

read more Germany Media freedom Ethics of journalism

Germany: Press Freedom does not take precedence over relations with Ukraine and Russia

On 8 December 2015, the 6th Senate of the Higher Administrative Court of Berlin-Brandenburg decided that the Federal Government is not obliged to give information to a representative of the press on a report of the German ambassador in Ukraine

read more Legal protection Germany

Freedom of Expression and Information - 2014 ECHR and CJEU Case Law

A review of the European Court of Human Rights and European Court of Justice 2014 case-law on freedom of expression, media and journalistic freedoms

read more Freedom of expression Whistleblowing Council of Europe Member States EU Member States Russia Turkey

Press freedom in the EU: Legal framework and challenges

The European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS) provides with this short briefing, an effective contextualization of the legal framework and the challenges for Press freedom in the EU

read more Legal protection Freedom of expression Access to information Media pluralism Media Law

Romania: Investigative journalism law rejected by the Senate

The Romanian Senate rejected the draft of a law that legislators say intended to fight corruption by rewarding investigative journalists and other whistleblowers. The proposed law called for a special fund that would support people who reported on corruption via the mass media or via complaints to investigating and prosecuting bodies

read more Romania Investigative journalism

Use of personally-identifying information in reporting in Germany

A German court ruled that the interest of the public in the case of a dentist under investigation for aggravated assault takes precedence over the plaintiff's right to privacy. The plaintiff had sued for an injunction to stop a newspaper from publishing further articles pertaining to the case where he could be easily identified

read more Germany Legal protection Privacy

A Review of the European Court’s Freedom of Expression Cases in 2013

A review of the ECHR 2013 case-law on freedom of expression, media and journalistic freedoms

read more Defamation and Libel Whistleblowing

Audiovisual Media Services Directive

The EU Audiovisual Media Services Directive (AVMSD) governs EU-wide coordination of national legislation on all audiovisual media, both traditional TV broadcasts and on-demand services

read more EU Member States European Policy Media Law

European Convention on Human Rights

Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) is devoted to Freedom of expressions and defines the admissible conditions under which this freedom may be restricted

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European Charter on the Freedom of the Press

The charter formulates principles for the freedom of the press from government interference - in particular for their right to safety from surveillance, electronic eavesdropping and searches of editorial departments and computers, and to unimpeded access for journalists and citizens to all domestic and foreign sources of information

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European Charter on Fundamental Rights

Article 11 of the European Charter on Fundamental Rights Human Rights is devoted to Freedom of expression and information

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General comment No. 34 on Article 19 ICCPR

The UN Human Rights Committee's fundamental remarks on Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) on freedoms of opinion and expression

read more Freedom of expression Media pluralism Media Law Human rights Media freedom Access to information

IFJ Global Charter of Ethics for Journalists

Adopted on 12th June 2019 in Tunis, the IFJ Global Charter of Ethics for Journalists completes the IFJ Declaration of Principles on the Conduct of Journalists of 1954 (the Bordeaux Declaration) and is based on major texts of international law

read more Freedom of expression Journalism education Media freedom

Press Freedom Police Codex

The Codex formulates in eight clauses how the police and journalists can cooperate

read more Safety of journalists Media freedom

EP Resolution: Strengthening Media Freedom: the Protection of Journalists in Europe, Hate Speech, Disinformation and the Role of Platforms

European Parliament resolution of 25 November 2020 on strengthening media freedom: the protection of journalists in Europe, hate speech, disinformation and the role of platforms (2020/2009(INI)). On 25 November 2020 the European Parliament adopted a very important resolution tackling many aspects of media freedom

read more SLAPP Safety of journalists European Policy

European Democracy Action Plan

This action plan addresses the EU institutions, national governments and parliaments − who have primary responsibility for ensuring the sound functioning of democracy −, as well as other national authorities, political parties, media and civil society, and online platforms. In full respect of national competences, it sets out a reinforced EU policy framework and specific measures to:

-Promote free and fair elections and strong democratic participation;

-support free and independent media; and

-counter disinformation

read more SLAPP Safety of journalists European Policy