Strasbourg Observers

View posts from: Freedom of Expression

  • Ronan Ó Fathaigh

Imposing Costs on Newspaper in Successful Source-Protection Case Did Not Violate Article 10

November 17, 2014

By Ronan Ó Fathaigh In the summer of 2009, the Irish supreme court issued a landmark opinion, overturning an order issued against a newspaper to answer questions about a leaked document it had received from an anonymous source. However, four months later, the same supreme court ruled that the newspaper was required to pay the […]

  • Guest Blogger

Conviction of journalist for reporting about sex abuses in a Christian rehabilitation centre violated Article 10 ECHR

November 12, 2014

By Flutura Kusari * and Dirk Voorhoof ** In Erla Hlynsdottir v. Iceland (no. 2), an Icelandic journalist had been convicted for defamation after reporting that the director of a Christian rehabilitation centre and his wife had been involved in sex games with patients of the centre. The European Court of Human Rights found a […]

  • Guest Blogger

German Court Injunction Banning Political Leaflet Violated Article 10: Brosa v. Germany

May 21, 2014

This guest post was written by Ronan Ó Fathaigh* and Dirk Voorhoof** In a victory for free expression, the European Court has ruled that a court-imposed injunction banning a political activist from distributing leaflets targeting a political candidate violated Article 10 of the European Convention. The Court in Brosa v. Germany criticised the German courts […]

  • Guest Blogger

If you can’t stand the heat, don’t turn up the oven: Strasbourg Court expands tolerance for criticism of xenophobia to criticism of homophobia

May 05, 2014

This post was written by Sander Steendam, Ph.D. Researcher at the Human Rights Centre of Ghent University. Sander works on the IAP project ‘The Global Challenge of Human Rights Integration: Towards a Users’ Perspective’. In his research, Sander focuses on LGBT rights. On the 17th of April 2014, the European Court of Human Rights issued a […]

  • Weichie

Human Rights Centre Supports Request for Referral to the Grand Chamber in Delfi AS v. Estonia

January 17, 2014

The Human Rights Centre of Ghent University has expressed its support for the request for referral to the Grand Chamber in the freedom of expression case of Delfi AS v. Estonia. The Human Rights Centre has submitted its considerations in a joint letter to the European Court of Human Rights, signed by an impressive list […]

  • Guest Blogger

Criminal conviction for denying the existence of the Armenian “genocide” violates freedom of expression

January 08, 2014

This guest post was written by Dirk Voorhoof*. The post is a shortened version of an original contribution by the same author, which first appeared on the ECHR Blog. It is reproduced here, in shortened version, with permission and thanks. In Perinçek v. Switzerland, the European Court of Human Rights ruled on 17 December 2013, […]

  • Guest Blogger

The press and NGOs’ right of access to official documents under strict scrutiny of the European Court of Human Rights

December 03, 2013

By Dirk Voorhoof* and Rónán Ó Fathaigh**, Ghent University In its judgment of 28 November 2013 in the case of Österreichische Vereinigung zur Erhaltung, Stärkung und Schaffung eines wirtschaftlich gesunden land- und forstwirt­schaftlichen Grundbesitzes v. Austria (OVESSG) the European Court of Human Rights has further clarified and expanded the scope of application of Article 10 […]

  • Weichie

Ricci v. Italy: Less Restrictive Alternatives in Exercising Freedom of Expression?

November 07, 2013

On 8 October 2013, the European Court of Human Rights released its judgment in the case of Ricci v. Italy. The case concerned a broadcast by the satirical television programme Striscia la notizia (on Canale 5), which aired an intercepted episode of another television programme, normally broadcast on the public network RAI. The applicant in Ricci […]

  • Guest Blogger

Qualification of news portal as publisher of users’ comment may have far-reaching consequences for online freedom of expression: Delfi AS v. Estonia

October 25, 2013

This guest post was written by Dirk Voorhoof* The European Court’s judgment of 10 October 2013 in Delfi AS v. Estonia has caused a lot of controversy in the world of online media, news portals, internet-groups and freedom of expression websites. Especially the criticism by Article 19, Index on Censorship and The Guardian (amongst others, […]

  • Guest Blogger

Article 10 of the Convention includes the right of access to data held by an intelligence agency

July 08, 2013

This post is written by Dirk Voorhoof, Ghent University.* In its judgment of 25 June 2013 in the case of Youth Initiative for Human Rights v. Serbia the European Court of Human Rights has recognised more explicitly than ever before the right of access to documents held by public authorities, based on Article 10 of […]

  • Weichie

ECtHR Really Applies Less Restrictive Alternative: Saint-Paul Luxembourg S.A. v. Luxembourg

May 01, 2013

The structured proportionality test, as utilised by the German Constitutional Court (among others) and championed by Robert Alexy and his followers, subjects limitations of fundamental rights to a three-pronged test. The test is intended to examine – step by step – a measure’s (i) suitability, (ii) necessity and (iii) proportionality stricto sensu. Correct application of […]

  • Guest Blogger

Ban on Political Advertising Does Not Violate Article 10: Animal Defenders International v. UK

April 24, 2013

This guest post was written by Ronan Ó Fathaigh* On Monday, the Grand Chamber of the European Court held, by nine votes to eight, that the UK’s ban on political advertising on television did not violate Article 10. The majority opinion in Animal Defenders International v. the United Kingdom departed substantially from the Court’s previous […]

  • Guest Blogger

New Judgment on Trade Union Freedom of Expression

November 07, 2012

This post is written by Dirk Voorhoof* The European Court of Human Rights delivered a new and remarkable judgment on trade union freedom of expression. In Szima v. Hungary the European Court concluded that a criminal conviction of a leader of a police trade union for having posted critical and offensive comments on the Union’s […]

  • Guest Blogger

Case Law, Strasbourg: Mouvement Raelien Suisse v Switzerland, Of Aliens and Flying Saucers

July 31, 2012

This guest post was written by Gabrielle Guillemin* and is a re-blog from Inforrm’s Blog (original post here).   Earlier this month, the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights handed down judgment in Mouvement Raelien Suisse v Switzerland (Application no.16354/06). The case concerned the Swiss authorities’ refusal to allow a billboard campaign […]

  • Guest Blogger

The Right To Protest Contained By Strasbourg: An Analysis of Austin v. UK & The Constitutional Pluralist Issues it Throws Up

April 17, 2012

This post is written by David Mead who is a Senior Lecturer at the UEA Law School and author of The New Law of Peaceful Protest: Rights and Regulation in the Human Rights Act Era published by Hart in 2010. More information about David can be found here http://www.uea.ac.uk/law/Staff/All+People/Academic/dmead The last few days have proved to be […]

  • Guest Blogger

Criminal conviction of professor for refusal to give access to research files did not affect his Convention rights: Gillberg v. Sweden

April 04, 2012

This post on freedom of expression, academic research, privacy protection and access to official documents is written by Dirk Voorhoof* and Rónán Ó Fathaigh** The Grand Chamber of the European Court has, more firmly than its Chamber judgment of 2010, confirmed that a Swedish professor could not rely on his right of privacy under Article […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

Stereotypes of Roma: Aksu v. Turkey in the Grand Chamber

March 20, 2012

 The Grand Chamber has handed down its much-awaited judgment in Aksu v. Turkey. This case concerns the use of derogatory stereotypical images of Roma in government-sponsored publications. The Grand Chamber holds with 16 votes to 1 that article 8 (right to private life) has not been violated. I have mixed feelings about the Court’s reasoning. […]

  • Guest Blogger

Yes Prime Minister!

February 23, 2012

This post is written by Dirk Voorhoof* and Rónán Ó Fathaigh** In the case of Tuşalp v. Turkey, the European Court was asked to consider whether two defamation actions taken by the Prime Minister of Turkey against a journalist for protection of his personality rights were compatible with Article 10 of the European Convention.

  • Guest Blogger

Grand Chamber Seeks to Clarify Balancing of Article 10 and Article 8

February 21, 2012

Today’s guest post was written by Rónán Ó Fathaigh, one of our colleagues at the Human Rights Centre. More information on Rónán can be found on the website of the Center for Journalism Studies of Ghent University, here. The Grand Chamber of the European Court delivered two judgments recently concerning the appropriate balancing exercise where […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

Anti-Gay Hate Speech: Vejdeland and Others v. Sweden

February 14, 2012

The Court has handed down a fascinating judgment on the freedom of expression. Vejdeland and others v. Sweden is the first time that the Court applies the principles relating to hate speech in the context of sexual orientation. A unanimous Court has ruled that Sweden did not violate the right to freedom of expression: the […]

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