Journalism in international law – protected or defenseless? | MEDIA LAW | DW | 07.08.2019
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Media Law

Journalism in international law – protected or defenseless?

SAVE THE DATE: On 11 December 2019, Deutsche Welle and Cologne University’s Institute for Media and Communications Law continue their series of events.

ZOOM – International media law in a new era

The media law session on the subject ‘Journalism in international law – protected or defenseless?’ will take place on 11 December 2019 at the European School of Management and Technology (ESMT) in Berlin.

All over the world, journalists face reprisal attacks, have to deal with bans and restrictions and fight for the freedom to carry out their work. This session will tackle these issues and examine them from a media law perspective.

To what extent do international agreements or the European Charter of Fundamental Rights protect the work of journalists? Does international law guarantee minimum standards for journalism, and are these sufficiently implemented by national legal systems? Where, and to what extent, are actual principles of media law codified: for example, the protection of sources and source material, as well as personal security?

It seems that the common understanding of freedom of the press and of broadcasting – well established in large parts of the world as a defense of the work of journalists – is being challenged. Is there still a consensus on minimum safeguards, at least within Europe?

If legislative and administrative restrictions on indisputable basic principles of press freedom are imposed in subtle and imperceptible ways, how can this be countered? We want to look at what methods are available to the European Commission and other international institutions, should they want to tackle states that attack press freedom for political reasons.

The future of the free and unrestricted work of journalists depends first and foremost on the degree of protection guaranteed under international law. We will address the question whether it is realistic to aim to strengthen this protection and what mechanisms might be applied.

Representatives from the fields of legal theory, politics and journalism will be discussing these topics. The investigative journalist, Hans Leyendecker, will give the keynote address.

The media law session is part of a series of events on international media law. The topic of the inaugural event was ‘The free flow of information – dangerous or endangered?’.

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