Archive item

Title: Hungarian Media Laws Q&A
Other/original title:
Publisher: Article 19
Files: Hungarian media laws q and a.pdf
Abstract: In this report, the international freedom of expression organisation ARTICLE 19 and the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union explain "how the new media laws have contributed to the deterioration of the media situation in Hungary" in a questions and answers format. The report provides information on the scope of the new media laws and explains why the current government undertook the media reform. The public reaction toward the reform both in Hungary and abroad are also outlined. The report identifies the following key issues as the most problematic aspects of the media laws from a freedom of expression perspective: the laws establish a hierarchical media regulatory system under the control of a nonindependent administrative body; content requirements are unclear; the laws fail to comply with international legal standards; the government has control over the public service broadcasters; the Media Council has powers to oblige internet service providers to block any internetbased news outlets; the lack of protection of journalistic sources; the lack of safeguards against arbitrariness in the licensing procedures; and the Media Council can impose high fines. The report also notes, however, that "no serious sanctions have been imposed against journalists and media so far (although some cases are pending)".
Publication/ adoption date: 2011-08
Language: English
Rights: Article 19. Permission for reproducing the document granted by email.