Too much for others, too little for us – The draft European Media Freedom Act from a Hungarian perspective

Written by Gábor Polyák

Reading the draft of the European Media Freedom Act published last September, it is clear that the European Union also wants to respond to the challenges posed by the Hungarian media situation since 2010. It can be seen as evidence that the European Commission is also aware of how unsuccessful it has been so far in curbing the systemic erosion of media freedom. At the time of publication of the draft, rule of law proceedings against Hungary were well under way. However, while the EP report on the Article 7 procedure again found a serious violation of media freedom, the conditionality procedure and the Charter of Fundamental Rights eligibility criteria inquiry leading to real sanctions did not address the media situation at all. None of the 27 “supermliestones” set out in these procedures as conditions for the payment of EU funds address the situation of the media. The only indirect exception to this is the restoration of the pre-2015 conditions for access to data of public interest, which cannot, however, eliminate the risk that public authorities and other bodies with public responsibilities delay for years in complying with data requests. 

Full article: Too much for others, too little for us

A shorter version of this article published on Verfassungsblog.