Tag: law

EU Commission on Hungarian media law: “Serious doubts”

It was a indeed a “bad start” for the Hungarian presidency of the EU Council:  First the fierce criticism about the media law by the international media (see my #Censorban post here) followed by  a carpet row and last weeks’ MEP protests in the European Parliament. And it is not even February…

In the meantime the European Commission started reviewing the controversial Hungarian media law and it just happened that the official letter of Neelie Kroes has been leaked to the Hungarian daily Népszabadság.

The letter (pdf) can be found here.

In the letter the European Commission asks the Hungarian authorities for “clarifications” on several issues:

  • Obligation of balanced coverage applicable to all audiovisual media services
  • Country of origin principle
  • Registration requirements

It concludes with the statement that “Commission services have serious doubts as to the compatibility of the Hungarian legislation with Union law” . Furthermore, the European Commission “invites the Hungarian government to submit within two weeks observations on how these serious doubts may be addressed ”

A couple of bloggingportal editors will be meeting with some representatives of the Hungarian Council presidency later this week. If you have any questions you would like us to ask – feel free to use the comments below or contact bloggingportal (email, twitter, facebook)!

Total Denial

Total Denial is an amazing documentary about an historic lawsuit connected with the UNOCAL/TOTAL oil pipeline in Burma. One of the few screenings of the film took place in Brussels on Friday (organised by Avocats Sans Frontières), check out the official movie page here for more dates and details:

Total Denial is the story of a historic lawsuit: Fifteen villagers from the jungles of Burma bringing suit against a giant oil corporation for human-rights abuses, in U.S. courts. After ten years of fierce legal battles, the impossible victory.”

At the same time the outcome of the lawsuit will change the legal framework for corporations worldwide. For the first time a company was sued for human rights violations committed overseas. Even though this case was possible in the US under the Alien Torts Claim Act (a law introduced in 1789!) similar cases are pending in Europe (for example in France and Belgium). Here is the trailer:

After the movie the director Milena Kaneva shared her thoughts about the implications of the movie with the audience which was indeed an inspiring and very interesting experience. However, the movie is still in need for some additional funding and support (distribution, DVD production…) … so if you have a some spare money or if you know a potential funding institution go to the sponsorship section of the official homepage… (Normally I do not use this blog for fundraising purposes but this is an exception: this documentary is definitely worth it!)

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